Farmers’ protest 2.0: Opposition slams BJP over using of iron nails, concrete slabs to stop ‘Chalo Delhi’ march

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and the Congress extended their support to the farmers who are set to stage a ‘Delhi Chalo‘ march towards the national capital on Tuesday. They criticised the BJP over the measures to prevent farmers from entering Delhi, including the installation of iron nails, barbed wires and concrete barricades.

Authorities in Haryana have snapped internet services and fortified the state’s borders with Punjab at many places in Ambala, Jind, Fatehabad, Kurukshetra and Sirsa using concrete blocks, iron nails and barbed wires to scuttle the proposed march.

In Delhi, massive deployment of police and paramilitary personnel besides multi-layered barricading have been made to seal the national capital borders at Singhu, Tikri and Ghazipur to prevent the protesting farmers from entering the city on Tuesday.

Delhi minister and AAP leader Gopal Rai equated the measures of the police to stop farmers from marching towards Delhi with that of “British rule”.

“Like British rule, the BJP-led Centre has put nails on roads and built walls to stop the farmers. Farmers want to come to Delhi, but to stop them, the BJP government is reminding them of the era of slavery by barricading roads,” Rai said.

He alleged that police were being sent to villages of Haryana and threats were issued that people’s passports, bank accounts and property papers would be confiscated if they joined the farmers’ protest.

Rai urged the Centre to talk to farmers with an open mind and resolve their issues. He said the farmers’ demands should be met in consultation without any delay.

Rai’s colleague Saurabh Bhardwaj voiced similar sentiments and alleged that the Centre’s “arrogance has increased” with the farmers’ launching their movement again in a possible repeat of the 2020 protest.

“It is shameful that if the country’s ‘annadata‘ (farmers) wants to come to the national capital, the government is trying to threaten them with force. I believe that the central government’s arrogance has increased. This time too, farmers will break their pride,” he told news agency PTI.

On the other hand, Congress leader and Leader of Opposition in Punjab assembly, Partap Singh Bajwa, said, “I extend full support to the farmers’ unions, who are scheduled to protest.”

He alleged that the Centre backtracked from its promise of minimum support price (MSP) issue.

Slamming the Centre over the measures to stop farmers from entering Delhi, Bajwa said,”I condemn the Haryana government in the strongest possible terms for sealing the border for its fellow citizens. The central government should fulfil the genuine demands of the farmer, including the MSP guarantee.”

On Sunday, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi over barricading and laying of nails on roads at certain points near Delhi’s border ahead of the farmers’ protest, asserting that those who lay nails in the path of farmers were not worthy of trust.

In a post in Hindi on X, Rahul Gandhi said, “PM Modi, who ‘cultivates lies’ day and night, has only cheated farmers in the past 10 years. Promising doubling of their income, PM Modi also made farmers struggle for MSP.”

“Due to them not getting fair prices for their crops and burdened with inflation, farmers’ debts increased by 60 per cent. As a result, about 30 farmers lost their lives every day. The one whose USP is deception, can only do politics with farmers in the name of MSP, not justice,” he said.

“Those who put nails in the path of farmers are not worthy of trust, uproot them from Delhi. The Congress will provide justice and profit to farmers,” the former Congress chief said.

The Samyukta Kisan Morcha (Non-Political) and the Kisan Mazdoor Morcha have announced that more than 200 farmer unions will head to Delhi to press the Centre to accept their demands.


Farmers said they would proceed ahead with their ‘Delhi Chalo’ march on Tuesday morning, after their five-hour-long meeting with two Union ministers, Arjun Munda and Piyush Goyal, over their demands remained inconclusive.

“We do not think the government is serious about any of our demands. We do not think they want to fulfill our demands. Tomorrow (Tuesday), we will march towards Delhi at 10 am,” farmer leader Sarwan Singh Pandher told reporters after the meeting ended just before midnight.

Union Agriculture Minister Arjun Munda, who along with Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Piyush Goyal attended the meeting, said a consensus was reached on most issues and the government proposed that the remaining be addressed through the formation of a committee.

“The government always wants that we can resolve every issue through dialogue. We are still hopeful and we welcome talks,” Munda said.

(with inputs from PTI)

Published By:

Prateek Chakraborty

Published On:

Feb 13, 2024

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