Amid protests and preparations for the farmers’ massive tractor rally in Delhi on Tuesday, in time for Republic Day celebrations in the national capital, a farmer from Punjab has reached Delhi on his tractor in reverse gear. The stunt was a symbolic one, appealing the Centre to ‘reverse’ the farm laws.
Thousands of farmers from Punjab, Haryana and western UP have been camping at several border points outside of Delhi since November 28 last year, demanding a repeal of three farm laws and a legal guarantee to the minimum support price (MSP) for their crops.
A tweet shared by Tractor2twitr said: “A farmer drove his tractor from Punjab to Delhi in reverse gear. He said @narendramodi should also reverse (repeal) the anti-farmer laws.”
“Tractor march on January 26 will take place as decided by us on Outer Ring Road. We have informed the police it is for the government to ensure that it should be peaceful,” farmer leader Balbir Singh Rajewal had earlier said.
On Tuesday, 25,000 tractors from UP and Uttarakhand will also participate in the ‘kisan parade’, Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Rakesh Tikait said on Saturday.
Enacted in September last year, the three farm laws have been projected by the Centre as major reforms in the agriculture sector that will remove middlemen and allow farmers to sell their produce anywhere in the country.
However, the protesting farmers have expressed their apprehension that the new laws would pave the way for eliminating the safety cushion of MSP and do away with the “mandi” (wholesale market) system, leaving them at the mercy of big corporates.