Farmers have started gathering in Haryana’s Karnal for the kisan mahapanchayat scheduled for Tuesday noon. Till 10:30 am, around 250 farmers had reached the Karnal mandi, the venue for the mahapanchayat and the numbers are expected to increase in the next few hours.
Multi-layer security has been deployed at the spot. Around 30 battalions, including the Centre’s forces have been deployed to ensure the security of farmers and to avoid any untoward incident. Though there are multi-layers of barricades to stop the people from moving towards the Karnal mandi, the agitating farmers said they will reach the spot at any cost.
“If needed, we will break the barricades. No security can stop farmers from attending the mahapanchayat,” said Jagdeep Singh Chaduni, a Karnal-based Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU). “People have started coming and they will reach the mandi soon. All farm leaders will reach the spot by noon and then mahapanchayat will start,” he added.
Farmers gathered at Karnal mandi said they want action against the IAS officer who had ordered police action on August 28. They said the official should be suspended and the families of all farmers who have sacrificed their lives during the protest should be compensated.
The farmers will hold the mahapanchayat at the grain market of Karnal and then take out a protest march on NH 44 before proceeding towards the mini-secretariat. The protesting farmers have been demanding action against the IAS officer who ordered police action on August 28, and those policemen who were involved in the lathicharge on the protesting farmers. They have also sought a compensation of Rs 25 lakh and a government job to the next of kin of Sushil Kajal, a farmer from Gharunda who received head injuries in the lathicharge and died later due to heart attack. The farmers further demand compensation of Rs 2 lakh for the wounded persons.
“The state administration has made all arrangements (for Kisan Mahapanchayat). No one will be allowed to take the law into their hands. We appeal to our farmer brothers to peacefully conduct their public meeting,” Haryana Home Minister Anil Vij said.
Meanwhile, the state government has ordered the suspension of mobile internet services in Karnal district to “stop the spread of misinformation and rumours”. The mobile internet services in Karnal district will remain suspended till Tuesday midnight, according to an order of the Home Department.