Thousands of farmers’ tractors gathered outside New Delhi on Monday to protest against the government’s agrarian reforms in the wake of India’s annual January 26 Republic Day parade of tanks and troops.
According to the reports, farmers’ protesters in India have been camping at the entrances of New Delhi since November in protest of the agricultural laws. The sector will be brought under control.
Farmers plan to hold a large tractor rally in front of Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday after India’s Republic Day celebrations and annual military parade.
Thousands of tractors decorated with India’s large tricolour flags have already gathered at the main points of the three entrances to the capital Delhi.
In addition, another 10,000 farmers have gathered in the western city of Mumbai to show solidarity with the protesters.
The government has deployed security forces across the capital to keep farmers away from an important traditional day (Republic Day) in India’s political calendar.
It may be recalled that the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Boris Johnson was scheduled to attend the Republic Day celebrations in India on Tuesday but he apologized for the visit after the spread of coronavirus in his country.
Farmers say they want a ‘peaceful’ tractor rally in Delhi aimed at ‘winning the hearts’ of the population.
Yogendra Yadav of the Swaraj India Party, who has supported the protests, said, “For the first time, farmers will take part in their parade on Republic Day.”
“Closed roads will be opened and farmers will be allowed to enter Delhi and march,” he said.
The government had opposed the farmers’ rally, saying it would be a “disgrace to the nation” on such an important day.
However, police said they would allow 12,000 tractors into the city after the official parade.
The new agricultural laws will allow farmers to sell their produce on the open market. Earlier, however, they sold products through government agencies that guaranteed the lowest prices.
Farmers have demanded that the government repeal laws that would leave them at the mercy of large private companies.
The government has offered to suspend implementation of the reforms for 18 months, but the deadlock has not ended despite several rounds of talks between farmers’ unions and ministers.