Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Police personnel stand guard amid farmers’ protest against the new farm laws at Singhu border in New Delhi.(ANI)
As the protests against the contentious farm laws intensifies, farmers across the country will observe a nationwide strike, Bharat Bandh, on Tuesday. In view of the strike, the central government sent an advisory to all the state governments and union territory (UT) administrators on Monday asking them to tighten security and maintain the law and order.
In the advisory, the Centre asked the state governments and UT administrations to ensure that protesters strictly adhere to all Covid-19 guidelines issued with regard to health and social distancing.
It also asked the states and UTs to take all precautionary measure in order to avoid any untoward incident in the country. The Centre’s main focus in on peace and tranquillity, which it said should be maintained.
Thousands of farmers are protesting against the Centre’s new agricultural laws for the past 11 days. As the talks with the government have so far remained futile, the protesting farmers have called for a nationwide strike on Tuesday. Protesting farmers will begin their strike from 11am and it continue toll 3pm.
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During the strike, they are expected to block roads and services such as transport and banking may be affected. However, medical services like an ambulance or even weddings will go as usual.
“It is a symbolic protest to register our opposition. It is to show that we don’t support some of the policies of the Govt of India,” a spokesperson of the Bharatiya Kisan Union Rakesh Tikait said.
The next round of talks between the government and the protesting farmers is scheduled to take place on Wednesday.
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Meanwhile, in Delhi, the epicentre of protests, several borders connecting the national capital to its neighbouring states are blocked. As per the traffic police advisory, borders that are completely closed are Singhu, Tikri, Auchandi, Jharoda, Piao Maniyari, and Mangesh in outer and south-western parts of the city and the Chilla border, connecting Delhi and Noida, in east Delhi.
The farmers are protesting 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.