Lucknow:A group of eleven farmers from the Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU) protesting at the Delhi-Noida border on Monday decided to mount further pressure on the government against three farm laws and announced an indefinite hunger strike at all protest sites. They said the hunger strike starts on Monday and will continue till the Union government rolls back the contentious laws and asked protesters from across states to join them.
“The new farm laws are death warrant for the farmers and they will protest it till they are withdrawn," Rakesh Tikait, BKU leader, told NewsClick urging farmers’ unions to unite and join the ongoing protests at the four border points of Delhi – Singhu, Tikri, UP Gate and Chilla.
He further said, "This is high time for every farmer to join the battle against the adamant government who is not ready to find any solution. I am in touch with both small and big farmers who will soon join the protest here at the border."
Meanwhile, members of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Bhanu) at Chilla border on Saturday burnt copies of the open letter written to them by Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar. Yogesh Pratap Singh, UP unit chief of the farmers' group at Noida-Delhi Link Road, Chilla border, reiterated, “The protest will not end until the three laws are repealed.”
UP LAUNCHES 'OPERATION DEHAT'
The Uttar Pradesh government has launched 'operation dehat' in rural areas of Western UP to prevent people from participating in the ongoing farmers’ movement at the UP-Delhi border. According to farmers, they have been given threat and instruction to keep distance from the protest, or otherwise they would face dire consequences.
A group of farmers from adjoining Bulandshahr district had attempted to move to Delhi via Greater Noida to join the larger protest sites at the Delhi-Haryana border but were stopped by the police, said officials.
“These protestors had gathered at the Luharli Toll Plaza in Dadri area where they were pacified by police officials and were convinced to return home. They agreed to return after submitting a memorandum of their demands to officers,” a leader of BKU (BHANU) said.
The farmers claimed that the beat constable in Western UP is giving records of each village to the police stations on daily basis. The police are preparing data of farmer leaders and activists who are mobilising local farmers to join protests in villages, they alleged, adding that cops are also patrolling the border and preventing farmers from going towards Delhi.