The Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU) has reiterated that it will go ahead with its plan to take out a big tractor rally on January 26 (Republic Day) if their demands are not accepted by the Centre on the farm laws. BKU spokesperson Rakesh Tikait said that the rally will begin from Red Fort and culminate at India Gate.
"On January 26, we will take out a procession from Red Fort to India Gate. We will hoist the flag where we will meet at the Amar Jawan Jyoti," he said.
"It will be a historic scene where on one side we will have kisan and on the other side jawan," Tikait added.
When asked whether the BKU will seek permission from police to organise the rally, he replied, "Police will never give us permission." Farmers with their tractors will come from Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh, he added.
In another related development, BKU leader Balbir Singh Rajewal wrote an open letter to farmers, urging them not believe in rumours being spread to defame their agitation against the Centre's farm laws. Rajewal said rumours are being spread about the farmers' proposed tractor parade on January 26.
He apprehended that some “anti-farmer forces” are desperately trying to “fail” their peaceful agitation. He stressed that the farmers' ongoing protest will remain peaceful. Rajewal noted that an agitation will only be successful if it is completely peaceful.
Rajewal said the ongoing agitation has turned into a “jan andolan” and has spread to Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and other states after having started from Punjab.
Giving details about farmers' proposed programmes in coming days, he said Mahila Kisan Diwas will be observed on January 18 and Guru Gobind Singh’s Parkash Purb on January 20. Azad Hind Kisan Diwas will be observed on January 23 on the birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, he said.
Meanwhile, the Centre had moved the Supreme Court, seeking an injunction against the proposed tractor march or any other kind of protest which seeks to disrupt the gathering and celebrations of the Republic Day on January 26. The Centre, in an application filed through the Delhi Police, had said that any proposed march or protest which seeks to disrupt and disturb the Republic Day celebrations will cause an “embarrassment to the nation”.
Farmers who have been camping at the Delhi borders for several weeks are demanding a repeal of the farm laws -- 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 and a legal guarantee to the minimum support price for crops.
However, the government has maintained that the new laws will bring farmers better opportunities and usher in new technologies in agriculture. The government argues that the three farm laws will remove the middlemen and allow farmers to sell anywhere in the country.