Ahead of the ‘Kisan Yatra’ scheduled in Kannauj district in Uttar Pradesh today, the police detained former UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav. The Samajwadi Party leader had led party workers to break through a security barrier to sit on a dharna to oppose the three controversial farm laws passed by the Parliament.
Akhilesh and his party supporters sat in the middle of the road and raised slogans against the government. Following which, the police detained him to remove him from the spot. He said that the government should implement a law to double farmers’ income, but “the government’s intention is not clear.”
Citing Covid-19 protocol, authorities had earlier informed that the Kisan Yatra had been denied approval and arrested several Samajwadi Party workers ahead of the event.
Meanwhile, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee expressed her support to the farmers protesting against the Centre’s new farm laws. She said, “I have not forgotten Singur. I promise full support to farmers.” The Trinamool Congress leader reminded the people of the 26-day hunger strike in Singur following the West Bengal’s left government’s forceful acquisition of farmlands.
She made these remarks while addressing a rally held in Medinipur, the headquarters of West Midnapore district. Mamata said, “We are supporting the farmers’ demands in tomorrow’s strike,” clarifying that while they support the demands, her party is not in favour of tomorrow’s Bharat Bandh called by the agitating farmers.
Besides, Mamata Banerjee said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government at the Centre must step down or call back the controversial farm laws. “West Bengal will never bow its head to the people who murdered Mahatma Gandhi,” she added.
Besides, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad accused non-BJP parties of extending their support to farmers’ protest and claimed that whatever reforms have been done in the farm sector during the NDA government’s time was on the to-do list of opposition when they were in power. He was accusing the Congress, which was in favour of privatisation earlier. He even claimed that the repeal of APMC Act was a part of Congress’s 2019 manifesto.
Meanwhile, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal visited the Singhu border, where farmers are protesting against Centre’s new farm laws. He is the first Chief Minister of a state to visit farmers and one among many leaders who extended support for the Bharat Bandh. Cabinet ministers and some party MLAs accompanied him.
The Delhi traffic police have issued a travel advisory for commuters since some of the borders remained closed. The peaceful protest led by farmers from Punjab and Haryana is underway at both Singhu and Tikri borders.