‘Locals’ conflict with farmers at Singhu

Chandigarh, January 29

Violence erupted at the Singhu protest site today after over 500 persons claiming to be locals pelted a farmers’ camp with stones, lead ing to a clash between them and the agitating farmers.

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Delhi Police SHO (Alipur) Pradeep Paliwal was injured after a man attacked him with a sword, an official said. The police resorted to lathicharge and used tear gas shells to defuse the situation. The protesters, claiming to be residents of nearby villages, said they wanted the site vacated as the prolonged farmers’ stir was affecting their livelihood.

At Tikri too, over 200 persons carrying the Tricolour demanded that the protest site be vacated. The police, however, intervened timely.

Some of the protesters were identified as residents of Singhu and nearby villages Daryapur, Bakhtawarpur and Hamidpur of Delhi, said police sources.

Tikri protesters were from Haridas Colony.

Meanwhile, throwing their weight behind farmers, several political leaders and public figures like Bheem Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad, Delhi Deputy CM Manish Sisodia, Congress leaders Ajay Kumar Lallu, Deepender Hooda and Alka Lamba, and RLD vice-president Jayant Chaudhary visited BKU leader Rakesh Tikait in Ghazipur.

Thousands of farmers gathered at Muzaffarnagar in UP on Friday to participate in a mahapanchayat in support of the protest against the new farm laws in Ghazipur on the Delhi-UP border. The mahapanchayat resolved to throw its full weight behind the Ghazipur protest.

Rakesh Tikait’s brother Naresh Tikait, who had called the mahapanchayat after Thursday’s developments at Ghazipur, told the charged crowd to move towards the Delhi border, about 100 km away.

A day after BKU leader Rakesh Tikait broke down at Ghazipur and tension spiralled amid fears that the farmers who had been camping there for two months would be forcibly removed by the local administration, all roads in western UP appeared to lead to Muzaffarnagar. — TNS/PTI

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