Singhu border witnesses violence as ‘locals’ conflict with protesters

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh/New Delhi, January 29

Violence broke out at the Singhu border protest site after large groups of people claiming to be locals reached there to vacate the area, leading to a clash between them and agitating farmers and prompting police to resort to baton charge and use teargas shells.

Delhi Police SHO (Alipur) Pradeep Paliwal was injured in the violence after a man attacked him with a sword, an official said, adding that some people were also wounded.

The official said that police detained the man who attacked the station house officer.

Enhanced security at Singhu border during farmers protest against the new farm laws, in New Delhi on Friday. PTI Photo

Delhi Police fired teargas shells and also resorted to lathi-charge on Friday after the Delhi-Haryana’s Singhu border witnessed clashes.

The group, comprising around 300 people, arrived at the famers’ protest site and things came to blows as they demanded the area to be vacated by the agitators who have been at the site for more than two months. 

The group, carrying national flags, asked them to clear the spot claiming that their presence was creating trouble.

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After heated arguments, the group started attacking the tents of the farmers. Following this, there was stone-pelting between the two groups.

Enhanced security at Singhu border during farmers protest against the new farm laws, in New Delhi on Friday. PTI Photo

The locals demanded that the farmers vacate the Singhu border protest site as they had “insulted” the national flag during their tractor parade on Republic Day.

Armed with sticks, the group of locals reached the site and asked the farmers to leave while raising slogans against them. Both sides also pelted each other with stones. The protesters at the Singhu border, much of which is barred for entry from outside, were coming out in numbers to resist the locals.

Enhanced security at Singhu border during farmers protest against the new farm laws, in New Delhi on Friday. PTI Photo

Delhi Police and the security personnel deployed at the Singhu border resorted to firing teargas shells to disperse the crowd at the protest site. The police also resorted to lathicharge to control the crowd.

A Delhi Police SHO was injured during the clash, officials said.

People who were shouting anti-farmers slogans throw stones, at a site of the protest against farm laws at Singhu border, in New Delhi on Friday. REUTERS

However, they were promptly stopped by farmer union volunteers which helped the situation from turning ugly.

“They are not locals, but hired goons. They were throwing stones, petrol bombs at us. They also tried to burn down our trolleys. We are here to resist them. We won’t leave the place,” said Harkirat Mann Beniwal, 21, from Punjab’s Khanna.

Thousands of protesting farmers had clashed with the police during the tractor rally called by farmer unions on January 26 to highlight their demand for repeal of the Centre’s three farm laws.

Thousands of farmers from Punjab and Haryana have been protesting at the Singhu border since November 26 last year demanding the repealing of three farm laws. — With agencies

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