Sunday, Nov 27, 2022

Farmers Observe 'Black Day' To Mark Six Months Of Protests Against Centre’s New Agri Laws

Farmers in Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana hoisted black flags atop their houses, shops and tractors today

Farmers protest with black flags against farm laws in Patiala. PTI

Farmers in many parts of north India observed “Black Day” today to mark six months of their sit-in protests at Delhi’s borders against the Centre’s contested new agriculture legislations.

To observe “Black Day” numerous farmers in Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana hoisted black flags atop their houses, shops and tractors.

At some places in Punjab, farmers also took part in a demonstration as they raised slogans against the Centre.

Farmers have been protesting the Centre’s Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, Farmers' (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.

While farmers have claimed that these legislations are anti-peasant, the Centre has asserted that they will help develop the agriculture sector.

Joining the farmers in their protest today, SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal also raised a black flag at his house in Badal village in Muktsar district and urged the Central government to accept the demand of protesting farmers.

Several political parties including the Congress, the Shiromani Akali Dal and the Aam Aadmi Party have extended their support to the farmers' protest call.

"Six months have passed since the farmers' protest at Delhi borders against the three farm legislations began," said Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee general secretary Sarwan Singh Pandher, slamming the Central government for not scrapping the legislations.

Pandher and Gurnam Singh Chaduni said that besides hoisting black flags at houses and vehicles, effigies of the BJP-led Union government will also be burnt.

Farmer bodies have appealed to all sections including the labourers, the youth, the jobless, traders and shopkeepers to raise black flags at their homes, shops and industrial establishments.

They have also asked people to put up black flags on their cars, motorbikes, tractors, trucks and other vehicles.

SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal tweeted, "As #KisanAndolan completes 6 months today, I again urge the Centre to deal compassionately with farmers & repeal the black laws. Have hoisted a #BlackFlag atop my Badal residence today & likewise @Akali_Dal_ leaders & workers have done the same observing #Black_Day_Of_Farmers."

Former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda had on Tuesday once again urged the central government to restart the dialogue process with protesting farmers.

"The farmers' movement near Delhi's borders has completed six months and a large number of farmers have left their families and are sitting at the borders. In such a situation, I again urge the government to hold talks with protesting farmers with a positive mindset," he had said in a statement.

Several rounds of talks between farmers and the government have failed to break the deadlock over the three Central legislations.

A government panel had met farmer leaders on January 22. There has been no talks between the two sides since January 26 when the farmers' tractor rally in the national capital turned violent.

(With PTI inputs)