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Sunday, 27 December 2020

Farmers block Delhi-Jaipur highway

Ravinder Saini

Tribune News Service

Rewari, December 26

Protesting farmers from Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana, Gujarat and Maharashtra staying put at the Shahjahanpur-Khera border for the past 13 days have intensified their agitation by blocking both sides of the Delhi-Jaipur highway (NH-44).

The development not only led to great inconvenience to the commuters but also kept the Rewari police and administrative authorities on their toes. They had to divert vehicular traffic to avoid the traffic snarl.

A heavy posse of local police and several companies of the RAF and ITBP have been deployed at the border to prevent farmers from entering Haryana. Top officers have also been keeping a close tab on the movement of the farmers camping here.

The farmers had, on December 13, pitched tents on one side of the highway for staging dharna against the three farm laws when the Rewari police did not let them head towards Delhi. They had left the other side of the highway open for vehicles.

"The farmers geared up to march towards Delhi on Friday but the police — sensing the situation — diverted traffic and placed barricades on the other side of the highway to thwart them. The farmers then took over the entire highway by parking their vehicles there with an intention to block it. However, the service lane has been kept open for small vehicles," said sources. Sources maintained that traffic for those going to Jaipur from Delhi has been diverted from Kaprivaas and Kasola Chowk (Rewari) while those coming from Jaipur could use the route from Behror and Shahjahanpur village (Rajasthan) to bypass the blockade point.

"I got stuck in a long queue of vehicles on an alternative route and it took around over 30 minutes to return to the highway," said Pawan from Delhi.

Balbir Singh Thaken, state secretary, All-India Kisan Sabha, said they had been awaiting direction from the Sanyukt Kisan Morcha for heading towards the national capital. Till then, they would continue to stage dharna here. The number of protesters is rising with farmers in large numbers joining the dharna daily, he claimed.

"Around 3,000 farmers from various states are camping on the border. Adequate arrangements have been made here to maintain law and order," Rewari SP Abhishek Jorwal told The Tribune.

from The Tribune

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