Farmer leader Rakesh Tikait on Monday set a November 26 deadline for the Union government to repeal the three new farm laws, and cautioned that protests will be escalated if the administration fails to accept the demand.
“The central government has time till November 26, after that from November 27, farmers will reach the border protest sites around Delhi by tractors from villages and strengthen the areas with solid fortifications,” Tikait said on Twitter.
November 26 will mark one year of the farmers’ protests at Delhi’s border sites in Singhu, Tikri and Ghazipur.
On Sunday, Tikait had warned of consequences if the Centre tried to forcefully remove the protestors from Delhi’s borders. “If there is an attempt to forcibly remove the farmers from the borders, then they will turn government offices across the country into Galla Mandi (grain markets),” he said in a tweet.
The farmer leader added that if the administration attempted to dismantle the tents of protesting farmers at the border sites, then the protestors would set them up at police stations and at the office district magistrate, according to ANI.
Farm law protests
The three contentious farm laws were passed by the central government in September 2020, which sparked off protests by farmers from Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh that have continued since then.
Thousands of farmers have been protesting against the laws, seeking their withdrawal, at Delhi borders since November last year.
The central government has claimed the new laws are aimed at making farming more profitable, but the farmers argue that they will bring about corporate dominance of the sector.
The farmers also claim that once the authority of the state marketing boards that provide a shield against exploitation collapses, private entities will dictate the price of their produce.
In January, nearly two months into the farmer protests, the Supreme Court had suspended the implementation of the farm laws.