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Saturday, 28 November 2020

Farm unions differ over strategy

Sushil Manav

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 27

Even after agitating farmers were allowed entry on Friday, they were undecided whether to move towards the designated Nirankari ground at Burari or hold sit-in at the borders.

While farmers who had gathered at the Tikri border moved towards Nirankari ground, escorted by the police, uncertainty continued among those who gathered at the Singhu border due to differences among various organisations over accepting the government's offer.

Sources said while farmer leaders from Haryana, including state BKU president Gurnam Singh Charuni, were in favour of protesting at Burari, a majority of farmer leaders from Punjab, including Balbir Singh Rajewal of the BKU (Rajewal), favoured staying put at the Singhu border near Kundli.

The sources said at one point, Charuni announced that farmers would move to Delhi, but when he realised that a large majority of farmers, including those from Haryana, were in no mood to go against their Punjab counterparts, he relented. Later, farmer leaders from Haryana announced that they would go by their Punjab counterparts' decision.

Sources said those against moving to the Nirankari ground were of the view that once they went there, the government was unlikely to listen to their demands even if they sat there for months.

"Deliberations are still on whether to move to Nirankari ground or hold a sit-in here. Farmers will stay for the night at the Singhu border at Kundli," said Rajinder Arya, president of Bhartiya Kisan Mazdoor Union, Haryana.

Meanwhile, chaos was witnessed on various roads in Haryana leading to the national capital as farmers, largely from Punjab, moved towards Delhi through several routes — Lalru, Shambhu, Patiala-Pehowa, Patran-Khanauri, Moonak-Tohana, Ratia-Fatehabad and Talwandi-Sirsa.

"We have enough ration stock to last for days. We will not go back till our demands are met," said a farmer leader.

from The Tribune

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