Regular site visitors resumes at Chilla border, farmers say protest nonetheless on at Noida border

Noida (UP), December 13

Protesting farmers on Sunday vacated carriageways on the Noida-Delhi Link Road via Chilla following a late-night meeting with Union Ministers Rajnath Singh and Narendra Tomar.

Officials said normal traffic resumed between Noida and Delhi via Chilla border after farmers vacated the spot they had been occupying since December 1 for their sit-in demonstration.

The movement on the DND and the Kalindi Kunj routes, both connecting Delhi and Noida, was also normal, they said.

The protest, however, continued at the border with some Bharatiya Kisan Union (Bhanu) members, including their chief Thakur Bhanu Pratap Singh, staying put at Chilla.

The farmers had vacated the carriageways around Saturday midnight after a meeting with Defence Minister Singh and Agriculture Minister Tomar, a BKU (Bhanu) office-bearer said.

“Rajnath ji heard our demands and agreed to take the discussions further and resolve the issues. We were convinced and decided to vacate the road. However, this does not mean that our protest is over,” Satish Tomar, a senior IT Cell member of the BKU (Bhanu), told PTI over phone.

He said a ‘havan’ was being performed at the Chila border on Sunday by the protesting farmers and further course of action would be clear by evening.

At Dalit Prerna Sthal in Noida, close to the Chilla border, another group of farmers belonging to the BKU (Lok Shakti) is staging a protest against the new laws. Some of the group members had on Saturday tonsured their heads and had earlier gone semi-naked during their protest.

These protestors have gathered at the Noida border and want to proceed to Delhi to join the bigger stir called by farmers from Punjab and Haryana.

Thousands of farmers are currently staying put at Delhi’s borders with Haryana and Uttar Pradesh in protest against the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.

They have expressed apprehension that these laws would pave the way for the dismantling of the minimum support price system, leaving them at the “mercy” of big corporations.

However, the government has maintained that the new laws will bring farmers better opportunities and usher in new technologies in agriculture.

Government officials said efforts are being made for the next round of talks between representatives of the Centre and the farmers so that the logjam over the new laws could end. PTI

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