Samyukt Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body of the farmers’ unions called off the tractor rally with immediate effect on Tuesday evening and asked the farmers to return to protest sites.
A massive rally of farmers to the Capital turned violent on Tuesday, with police using tear gas and baton-charging the protestors as they broke barricades and entered the city to hold a tractor parade. One protestor reportedly died after he was allegedly shot at while he was driving his tractor.
Angry by the police action, thousands of farmers deviated from the original route of their march, stormed the Red Fort, and hoisted bright yellow flags inside its complex. This led to another round of clashes, and the police resorted to baton-charge to remove protestors from the Red Fort.
This is the first time that farmers, who have been protesting at the borders for two months against the Centre’s farm laws, have entered Delhi.
Farmers are demanding that the government repeal the new laws which they say will hurt their livelihoods and help big companies. The government, which says the agriculture reforms will boost farmer incomes, has agreed to suspend the laws, but the farmers have said New Delhi must repeal them.
9.39 pm: Four cases registered in connection with vandalism during Tuesday’s tractor rally as eight buses and 17 private vehicles were attacked, reports ANI, quoting Delhi Police.
8.46 pm: At least 20 people, including both farmers and police personnel have been admitted to Lok Nayak Hospital in Delhi after sustaining injuries, reports IANS.
8.43 pm: Union Home Minister Amit Shah orders deployment of paramilitary forces in the Capital, following a meeting with Delhi Police and ministry officials, reports the Hindustan Times.
8.38 pm: As many as 83 police personnel got injured during Tuesday’s clash with farmers, reports PTI, quoting Delhi Police Public Relations Officer Anil Mittal.
8.09 pm: Here are latest updates on status of stations on the Delhi metro:
8.03 pm: Traffic movement now normal on Vikas Marg, Delhi Gate and ISBT Anand Vihar areas of the national Capital, says Delhi Police, reports ANI.
8.02 pm: Haryana government says internet and SMS services to remain suspended in Sonipat, Palwal, and Jhajjar districts of the state till 5 pm on Wednesday, reports ANI.
8 pm: Samyukt Kisan Morcha calls off tractor rally with immediate effect and asks farmers to return to protest sites, reports PTI.
7.54 pm: Samyukt Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body of the farmers’ unions says the protests will continue peacefully and further steps will be decided soon, reports PTI.
7.06 pm: The police and protestors clashed at multiple places in the Capital, leading to unprecedented scenes and one death.
Read our wrap of Tuesday’s events here: Tear gas at Singhu to rally inside Red Fort: Here’s how the farmers’ tractor parade unfolded
6.58 pm: Haryana Director General of Police Manoj Yadava issues a high alert and directs all district police chiefs to be extremely cautious in view of the farmers’ rally, ANI reports.
6.55 pm: Some protestors are still inside the Red Fort, NDTV reports.
6.51 pm: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee expresses concern over the situation in Delhi. “Centre’s insensitive attitude and indifference towards our farmer brothers and sisters has to be blamed for this situation,” she adds.
6.44 pm: Security personnel are seen at the Red Fort.
6.41 pm: The entry gates of Rohini Sector 18, Vidhan Sabha, Model Town, Inderlok, Samaypur Badli, Azadpur, Uttam Nagar East and Kashmere Gate metro stations are closed, according to DMRC’s update.
6.36 pm: Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s meeting with Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla, Delhi Police Commissioner S.N Shrivastava and Intelligence Bureau officials ends, The Hindu reports. A decision was made deploy extra paramilitary forces in Delhi.
6.06 pm: Deputy Commissioner of Police (New Delhi) Eish Singhal says protesters have turned violent at some places, reports ANI. He claims the police personnel used force only when necessary. Singhal also urges the farmers to follow the designated routes for their agitation.
6 pm: Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar criticises the government for failing to keep the law and order situation in Delhi under control, reports ANI.
“Nobody will support whatever happened today but the reason behind it cannot be ignored either,” he says while speaking about the violence in several parts of Delhi. “Those sitting calmly grew angry, the Centre didn’t fulfill its responsibility. The government should act maturely and take the right decision.”
5.58 pm: Protesting farmers have broken police barricades at Peeragarhi Chowk and are now moving towards Punjab Bagh in Delhi, reports ANI. The violence, which started in the morning as farmers broke barricades and moved to Delhi ahead of the given time, is still continuing.
5.55 pm: According to News18, farmers will continue their protests at borders and will end it only when the Narendra Modi government repeals the contentious legislations.
5.52 pm: In an apparent reference to the farmers agitation against the new agricultural reforms, Haryana Chief Minister ML Khattar says one has the freedom to protest, but not to spread anarchy, reports PTI.
“Our rights do not mean that we can do anything, there are some limits,” says Khattar. “And through these limits, we should remember that the Constitution which we have accepted, it becomes our responsibility to abide by it.”
5.49 pm: Speaking about the unprecedented chaos unfolding in Delhi, former Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok says that it has never happened in the history of the country that the farmers had to protest so long to get their demands fulfilled, reports PTI.
“No one is ready to listen to farmers and to understand their sentiments, which is very unfortunate,” he tells reporters. “The farmers have been agitating for over two months in the cold, taking out tractor rallies. This is an unfortunate situation and not in the country’s interest.”
5.45 pm: Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh urges protesting farmers to return to Delhi borders amid escalating chaos.
“Shocking scenes in Delhi,” he tweets. “The violence by some elements is unacceptable. It’ll negate goodwill generated by peacefully protesting farmers. Kisan leaders have disassociated themselves and suspended the tractor rally. I urge all genuine farmers to vacate Delhi & return to borders.”
5.37 pm: Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla has briefed Union Home Minister Amit Shah about the situation in Delhi, reports PTI. Groups of farmers protesting the new agricultural laws gathered early in the day and broke through barricades on the outskirts of the city, prompting security personnel to resort to baton-charge and firing tear gas.
5.30 pm: The latest Delhi metro security update:
- All entry and exit gates of Kashmere Gate except gate number 7 are closed.
- Normal services have resumed on grey line from Dwarka to Najafgarh in West Delhi.
- Entry and exit has been permitted through one gate in the following stations: Samaypur Badli, Rohini Sector 18/19, Haiderpur Badli Mor, Jahangir Puri, Adarsh Nagar, Azadpur, Model Town, GTB Nagar, Vishwavidyalaya, Vidhan Sabha and Civil Lines.
5.25 pm: The entry and exit gates of at least 20 metro stations in Delhi have been closed as thousands of farmers escalated protests to revoke controversial agricultural laws.
5.23 pm: Congress leader Shashi Tharoor criticises the protestors for hoisting flags at the Red Fort. “Most unfortunate,” he says in a tweet. “I have supported the farmers’ protests from the start but I cannot condone lawlessness. And on Republic Day no flag but the sacred tiranga [national flag] should fly aloft the Red Fort.”
5.22 pm: The flag that was hoisted by protesting farmers from a staff at the Red Fort was the “Nishan Sahib”, a symbol of Sikh religion seen at all Gurdwara complexes.
5.15 pm: The Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party condemns the violence at several places in Delhi as farmers entered the iconic Red Fort and ITO in the heart of national Capital, reports ANI.
“It is regrettable that the central government allowed the situation to deteriorate to such an extent,” the party says. “The movement has been peaceful for the last two months. Farmer leaders have said that those who indulged in violence today were not part of the movement and were external elements. Whoever they were, the violence has certainly weakened the movement which was going on so peacefully and in a disciplined manner.”
5.10 pm: The Delhi Traffic Police has issued its latest traffic advisory as tens of thousands of farmers protest against the farm laws in the national Capital.
5.08 pm: Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla and Delhi Police Commissioner SN Srivastava are present in the high level meeting with Union Home Minister Amit Shah, reports NDTV.
4.45 pm: Reports say Union Home Minister Amit Shah holds a meeting with senior ministry officials to take stock of the law-and-order situation in Delhi after the farmers protest turned violent.
4.34 pm: The Delhi Police resorted to baton-charge to remove protestors from the Red Fort, PTI reports.
4.30 pm: The Delhi Police resort to baton charge and fire tear gas shells at farmers at Nangloi Chowk in West Delhi, PTI reports. The protesting farmers reportedly broke cement barricades at Nangloi Chowk and Mukarba Chowk, after which the police fired tear gas shells at them.
4.08 pm: The Communist Party of India (Marxist) criticises the Centre for using tear gas and batons on farmers, reports PTI. “Tear gassing and lathi-charging Kisans is unacceptable,” party’s General Secretary Sitaram Yechury says. “Why, after the Delhi Police and Samyukt Kisan Morcha agreement? Why is the government provoking a confrontation. They must allow the peaceful, agreed tractor parade to continue.”
4.07 pm: Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh appeals to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to accept the farmers’ demands and repeal the new laws, reports PTI. “The farm laws are completely wrong as they are against federalism since agriculture is a state subject under Schedule 7 of the Constitution,” he adds.
3.58 pm: The Delhi Police say that two of its officers have been injured in today’s clashes near the Ghazipur border, reports ANI.
3.55 pm: The Samyukta Kisan Morcha distances itself from the “undesirable and unacceptable events that have taken place today”, reports ANI. “Despite all our efforts, some organisations and individuals violated route and indulged in condemnable acts,” the group says. “Anti-social elements had infiltrated the otherwise peaceful movement. We’ve always held that peace is our biggest strength and any violation would hurt the movement.”
3.54 pm: The entry and exit gates to the Jama Masjid metro station have been closed.
3.53 pm: Visuals from Old Delhi where the situation has escalated after some protestors entered the Red Fort’s complex and hoisted flags.
1.48 pm: Police baton-charge protestors outside the Red Fort after tens of thousands of farmers drove long lines of tractors into Capital on Tuesday, and entered the fort’s complex, reports NDTV.
3.34 pm: Over 1.5 km road leading to ITO from Indraprastha Metro Station is choked with tractors, reports The Hindu.
3.28 pm: The Ministry of Home Affairs temporarily suspends internet at Singhu border, Ghazipur border, Tikri border, Mukarba Chowk and Nangloi from noon to 23:59 hours today, reports CNBC-TV18
3.25 pm: The grey line of the Delhi Metro has been closed.
3.14 pm: As Prime Minister Narendra Modi oversaw the traditional Republic Day parade by the armed forces today, chaos was breaking out in several parts of the city just a few kilometers away. Waving multi coloured flags and holding placards, the protesting farmers marched on tractors, cars, motorbikes, horses and on foot from the outskirts of the city, where they had been camping for two months.
3.12 pm: Here are the roads commuters in Delhi should avoid taking today:
3.11 pm: As per Delhi Police’s latest advisory, traffic movement is closed from:
- Kapashera Chowk to Bijwasan Road. Diversion is given from Kapashera Border and Samalkha T Point
- Dwarka More to Uttam Nagar East Metro Station. Diversion is given from Dwarka More.
3.04 pm: Union minister Prahlad Patel says that protesting farmers have “violated the dignity” of the Red Fort today. “The Red Fort is a symbol of the dignity of our democracy, the agitators should have stayed away from the Red Fort,” he tweets as surreal images from moments ago showed farmers breaking into the fort’s complex and hoisting flags. “I condemn the violation of its dignity. It is sad and unfortunate.”
3.00 pm: Joint Commissioner of Police Shalini Singh appeals to the protesting farmers to maintain peace, reports ANI. “Since morning we had been appealing to farmers to go by pre-approved route but some of them broke police barricades, attacked police personnel,” she says. “This isn’t a peaceful protest.”
2.57 pm: The Connaught Place in central Delhi will remain closed today in view of the ongoing tractor parade by farmers, which turned violent at some places in the city, the New Delhi Traders Association says, reports PTI. On Republic Day every year, Connaught Place opens around 1 pm.
2.54 pm: Bharatiya Kisan Union spokesperson Rakesh Tait alleges that some politicians are trying to malign their agitation, reports ANI. “We know the people who are trying to create disturbance, they are identified,” he adds.
2.19 pm: One farmer was reportedly killed while driving his tractor near ITO, as he was allegedly shot at and then lost control of his vehicle, reports The Wire, quoting witnesses from the protest site. The man’s body is currently being kept near the ITO flyover by other protesters, who are not letting the ambulance take it away as they allege doctors will “change the reports”.
Situation at ITO escalated dramatically after the police used tear gas shells to disperse a sea of protestors.
2.13 pm: After entering the Red Fort complex, farmers are hoisting yellow coloured flags outside the structure.
2.08 pm: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi expresses concern over the escalating situation, and urges the Narendra Modi government to put an end to this by repealing the contentious farm laws. “Violence is not the solution to any problem,” he adds, as reports of police using tear gas and batons on protestors come in. “If anyone gets hurt, the damage will happen to our country.”
2.05 pm: A section of protestors is now waving flags from the ramparts of the Red Fort, while their counterparts shout slogans from below, ANI visuals show.
2.03 pm: Farmers keep arriving at the Red Fort in swelling numbers, reports The Indian Express.
1.59 pm: Rows of tractors start lining outside the Red Fort as farmers diverted from the original route for the tractor rally, after clashing with the police near ITO.
1.46 pm: A group of farmers deviate from the pre-designated routes for the tractor parade, and reach the Red Fort in Delhi, reports PTI.
1.38 pm: Farmers atop trucks take out mini proccessions near Singhu border.
1.35 pm: Utter chaos prevails near ITO in Delhi as farmers on tractors chased away police personnel deployed to stop them from proceeding further, reports NDTV.
1.17 pm: Meanwhile, police fire tear gas at protesting farmers near Peera Garhi metro station in Delhi.
1.15 pm: A protesting farmer tells NDTV that they’ll proceed towards India Gate from ITO.
1.05 pm: Farmer leader Balbir Sinh Rajewal condemns violence against protestors and says that they are following the pre-decided route for tractor rally, reports PTI.
1 pm: Visuals from Faridabad show police lathicharge protesting farmers, reports NDTV.
12.58 pm: The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation says that entry and exit gates of Samaypur Badli, Rohini Sector 18/19, Haiderpur Badli Mor, Jahangir Puri, Adarsh Nagar, Azadpur, Model Town, GTB Nagar, Vishwavidyalaya, Vidhan Sabha, Civil Lines and Indraprastha metro station are closed.
12.55 pm: According to NDTV, clashes are taking place between the Delhi Police and protesting farmers in Central Delhi’s ITO junction. Police are firing tear gas shells to disperse the farmers, reports ANI.
12.48 pm: Visuals show some farmers splashing their face with water after being exposed to tear gas near Maharaja Surajmal metro station in Delhi.
12.45 pm: Rakesh Tikait, spokesperson of the Bharatiya Kisan Union, says the farmers’ tractor rally is going on peacefully, according to ANI. “I don’t have any knowledge of it,” he says when asked about violent incidents. “We are at Ghazipur and are releasing the traffic here.”
12.44 pm: At ITO, farmers breach barricades near Delhi Police headquarters, reports ANI.
12.40 pm: Farmers have reached ITO and ISBT Kashmiri Gate, reports NDTV.
12.35 pm: More visuals of farmers entering Delhi for their tractor rally.
12.32 pm: Farmers began their tractor march in Delhi much before scheduled time, reports PTI. At Delhi’s Mukarba Chowk, security personnel use tear gas as farmers try to break barricades and cemented barriers.
11.33 am: NDTV Visuals show farmers breach barricades in a bid to enter Delhi as the police fire tear gas on them.
11.31 am: The police are using tear gas on farmers at the Sanjay Gandhi Transport Nagar area, reports ANI.
11.30 am: Massive crowds are seen at the Tikri border near Delhi, where thousands of farmers are participating in today’s tractor rally.
11.28 am: Chaos ensues at Mukarba Chowk area of Delhi as some protesting farmers climb atop a police vehicle, while others remove the police barricades set on the way to stop their tractors from entering the city, reports ANI.
11.19 am: Heavy security has been deployed in Delhi in view farmers’ parade. Here’s Delhi Police’s latest traffic advisory.
11.14 am: Some visuals from the Singhu border where farmers have turned their tractor march into an occasion of jubilation with music, dance and langar.
11.06 am: Delhi Police use tear gas at Singhu border to stop thousands of protesting farmers from entering the city before time for the tractor rally, reports ANI.
9.24 am: Caravans of tractors line up at Shingu border as tens of thousands of farmers protesting against new farm laws stream into the Capital ahead of the Republic Day celebrations.
9.11 am: Thousands of farmers at Singhu border break police barricades and begin marching to Delhi ahead of their tractor rally. The Delhi Police had given the protestors permission to take out the march after the day’s traditional parade by the armed forces on Rajpath.
9.06 am: Farmers break police barricades at Tikri and Singhu border to enter Delhi ahead of their tractor rally, reports PTI.
7.38 am: Visuals from near Ghazipur ahead of the tractor rally.
7.30 am: Thousands of tractors clogged key roads in north India on Monday as farmers left their homes across Punjab and Haryana to join a tractor rally in Delhi on Republic Day, reports the Hindustan Times.
7.28 am: Washed, clean and gleaming tractors, adorned with the tricolour and banners, are seen at Delhi’s borders, ahead of the mega tractor rally on Republic Day, reports the Hindustan Times.
7.23 am: The Delhi Police on Monday shut the Signature Bridge after farmers tried it enter from the Loni border side, reports News18. The police resorted to mild force to control the situation. Farmers are allowed to carry out a tractor rally from only three of Delhi’s border points – Singhu, Tikri and Ghazipur.
7.20 am: The Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee, one of the major participants, in the farmers’ tractor rally on Monday declared that it would not stick to the route agreed upon by the Samyukt Kisan Morcha and the police, reports NDTV.
Here are the top updates from Monday
- Farmers protesting near Delhi against the Centre’s three agricultural laws said that they will march towards the Parliament on February 1, the day of the presentation of the Union Budget.
- President Ram Nath Kovind backed the agriculture laws, suggesting that they were long awaited. Amid the ongoing farmers’ protest against the laws, Kovind also praised the cultivators for ensuring farm produce despite natural calamities and the coronavirus pandemic.
- Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Monday continued his criticism of the Narendra Modi government during his visit to Tamil Nadu, accusing the prime minister of destroying India’s agrarian economy with his pro-market farm laws.
- Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar said it was unfortunate that those in power did not care about protesting farmers.