Punjab farmers gherao BJP leaders, disrupt features

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 25

Amid the stalemate, farmers in Punjab on Friday stepped up their agitation, not allowing BJP leaders to hold functions in memory of Atal Bihari Vajpayee on his birth anniversary. In Jalandhar, Bharti Kisan Union (Rajewal) activists held a protest outside the residence of former Cabinet Minister Manoranjan Kalia. Several farmers received minor injuries as they tried to breach the police barricade outside Kalia’s house.

In Bathinda, farmers disrupted a function at Amrik Singh road, forcing the BJP workers to flee. A video of the incident went viral on the social media.

Farmers held a protest outside a hotel in Muktsar where a BJP function was underway. Sources said the BJP activists escaped from a back door of the hotel under police protection. Farmers led by the Krantikari Kisan Union picketed outside the residence of the Patiala district president of the BJP. While in Malout the farmers closed the gate of a hall where a BJP function was being held, a huge crowd comprising farmers and members of the Punjab Students Union surrounded the farmhouse of BJP leader Iqbal Singh Lalpura at Kalwan village in Ropar. The protesters later targeted a private telco’s tower at Jhajj village, snapping the power supply. Similar reports were received from Kotkapura and Fazilka.

Led by union vice-president Kirpal Singh Mussapur, Bharti Kisan Union (Doaba) activists in Phagwara gheraoed local BJP leaders who had gathered at a hotel. They raised slogans against the Modi government and Union Minister Som Parkash.

More ex-servicemen leave for Delhi

Hundreds of ex-servicemen left for Singhu and Tikri protest sites on Friday. “We will stay there and offer all possible help,” said ex-serviceman

Pargat Singh. “Today, the first batch left. More are preparing to go. To save our country, we must support the farmers,” a determined BKU (Ugrahan) leader, Harjeet Singh, said.

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