LIVE: 50 farmers have died so far during the agitation, says union leader

A farmer shout slogans during a protest against farm bills at Singhu Border in New Delhi on Thursday.
Farmers' protest LIVE updates Day 37: Hardening their position ahead of the next round of talks with the government, protesting farmer unions on Saturday said they will take out a tractor parade towards Delhi on January 26, when the country will celebrate Republic Day, if their demands are not met. The union leaders said the time has come for "decisive" action as their demands have not been addressed by the government yet.

A 75-year-old farmer protesting against the Centre's new agri laws allegedly hanged himself at the Uttar Pradesh-Delhi border in Ghazipur. 

The farmers have been demanding the withdrawal of the three laws and legal guarantee for minimum support price (MSP) which is declared every year by the Centre for 23 crops while the government has assured them that it will accept their two more demands related to stubble burning and electricity subsidies.

Farmers' protest is going on at Singhu border, Tikri border and Ghazipur border amid severe cold condition in Delhi and NCR.

Stay tuned for latest updates on farmers' protest


Haryana Police uses teargas to stop farmers' group from moving towards Delhi

Haryana Police on Sunday evening fired teargas canisters to thwart a march of a group of agitating farmers towards Delhi at Masani barrage in Rewari district.
Farmers first broke police barricades put up near Bhudla Sangwari village and then started moving towards Delhi in the evening.
They have been camping at the service lane of the Delhi-Jaipur highway for the past few days, police said.
When the farmers' group reached Masani barrage where the barricades were put up, police used teargas to disperse them.
“We have stopped them (farmers) at Masani,” Rewari Superintendent of Police Abhishek Jorwal said over the phone.
On December 31, a group of farmers had broken police barricades at the Shahjahanpur border with Rajasthan, trying to move towards the national capital.
Police had then too resorted to teargas shelling as well as using water cannons to stop them.

Cong slams govt over rice procurement from Chhattisgarh for central pool

Accusing the Centre of showing "apathy" towards farmers, the Congress on Sunday said the Food Corporation of India's Chhattisgarh unit was not lifting rice stocks and asked whether the procurement was "halted" because the government's "suit-boot friends" were not involved in managing storage in the state.
Congress spokesperson Gourav Vallabh said that despite prior intimation by the Food Corporation of India (FCI) to procure 60 lakh metric tonne of rice under the central pool for the kharif season, Chhattisgarh has not received a final consent.
After Vallabh made the assertion at a press conference, the Centre said it has restricted the procurement quantity of kharif rice this year for Chhattisgarh at last year's level of 24 lakh tonnes as per the policy because the state government is found to be giving financial incentives to paddy growers.
The Centre has decided to allow 24 lakh tonnes of rice to be delivered to FCI under central pool during the 2020-21 kharif marketing season (KMS) which is equivalent to the quantity as allowed in previous years, the Union food ministry said in a statement.
This is as per the MoU signed between the Centre, state governments and nodal agency FCI on decentralised and centralised procurement mechanism, it said.
Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel thanked the Centre for heeding his request and hoped that in future as well procurement will be done as per the assurances given earlier.

People stand with protesting farmers, PM Modi's misconcepiton will be cleared: Rajasthan CM

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Sunday said that the "misconception" of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah will get cleared as people of the country were with the farmers protesting in Delhi against the farm laws passed by the Centre.
He said it is "height of insensitivity" of the Centre that even after 39 days of farmers protest, it is not paying any heed. The government believes that farmers will get tired and the issue will gradually meet an end.
"Farmers are sensible that they are protesting peacefully. The feelings of people in six lakh villages are with the protesting farmers. Misconception of Modi ji and Shah ji will get cleared in the times to come," Gehlot said here.
The Congress organised a day-long protest on Sunday in support of farmers against the farm laws. Congress leader and former deputy CM Sachin Pilot also joined the protest organised by state Congress at Shaheed Smarak here.
CM Gehlot said the Centre does not have the right to decide the fate of farmers. He said the "fascist" government at the Centre does not believe in democracy and wants to destroy the country.
They are working to divide Hindu and Muslims and their intention is not right, Gehlot said.
He said that this time the government has messed up with farmers, who are wise enough and no one is instigating them.
The situation is serious so Congress wants to give a message that each party worker is with farmers and will join the protests with them if it is necessitated, he added.

Rains take down tents but not farmers' spirit at Noida-Delhi border

Protesting farmers at the Noida-Delhi border withstood rains and cold weather conditions as their demonstration against the Centre's recent farm laws continued here on Sunday.
Some tents at the protest sites collapsed due to the rain, prompting the farmers to use tarpaulin sheets for shelter as the drizzle continued till late afternoon.
Scores of farmers belonging to the Bhanu and Lok Shakti factions of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) are staying put at the Chilla border and the Dalit Prerna Sthal respectively for over a month now.
Despite the adverse weather conditions and a continued impasse with the government over the three new laws and the issue of legalisation of the minimum support price (MSP) for crops, the farmers said their protest will continue till the Centre repeals these legislations.
"Some of our tents collapsed due to the rain and the low temperatures also made it difficult for the protesters to sit under the open sky. Many of us took refuge under the structures at the Dalit Prerna Sthal, while tarpaulin sheets were used by others to stay put," BKU (Lok Shakti) spokesperson Shailesh Kumar Giri said.
The situation was similar at the Chilla border, but the Uttar Pradesh unit chief of the BKU (Bhanu), Yogesh Pratap Singh, said his union's "fight" will continue till their demands are met.
Meanwhile, the teachers' association of Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar University, Agra and the "Kisan Adhikar - Yuva Rozgaar" association lent their support to the BKU (Lok Shakti) as hundreds of members of these bodies reached the protest site on Sunday.

First time such arrogant govt in power, must withdraw farm laws unconditionally: Sonia

The Congress on Sunday accused the Centre of being apathetic towards farmers protesting the new farm laws in harsh weather conditions, with party chief Sonia Gandhi saying that for the first time since independence such an "arrogant" government has come to power that cannot see the sufferings of 'annadatas'.
She also demanded that the new farm laws be immediately withdrawn unconditionally.
In a scathing attack on the Centre over the farmers' protests, Gandhi said governments and their leaders who ignore public sentiments in a democracy cannot govern for long and it is now quite clear that the protesting farmers will not bow in the face of the Centre's policy of "tire and pushover".
"There is still time, the Modi government should leave the arrogance of power and immediately withdraw the three black laws unconditionally to end the agitation of the farmers who are dying in the cold and rain. This is Rajdharma and a true tribute to the farmers who have lost their lives," she said in a statement in Hindi.
The Modi government should remember that democracy means protecting the interests of the people and the farmers-workers, the Congress president said.
In the wake of the government's "apathy", so far, more than 50 farmers have lost their lives with some even taking the extreme step due to the government's neglect, she said.

Congress President Sonia Gandhi. (Photo: PTI)

Farmers hold protest against BJP in Sangrur

A group of farmers on Sunday held a protest in Punjab's Sangrur district against state BJP chief Ashwani Sharma who was there to meet party leaders.
The protesting farmers even tried to break barricades put up near the residence of a local BJP leader, forcing the police to use mild force to disperse them.
The farmers, shouting slogans against Sharma, wanted to gherao him in protest against the Centre's three farm laws.
Heated exchanges also took place between protesters and policemen.
A heavy police force was deployed in the area where the BJP leader was to arrive.
“There was a programme of Punjab BJP chief Ashwani Sharma in Sangrur. Some miscreants tried to disturb the programme,” Sangrur Senior Superintendent of Police Vivek Sheel Soni told reporters.
Denying that police cane charged the farmers, Soni said some people tried to break barricades with tractors.
Addressing the media, Sharma questioned how far was it right in a democracy to stop a particular organisation from holding its programmes.
He said the BJP has a right to hold programmes, meet party workers and leaders.
Sharma blamed some miscreants for disturbing the party's programmes, stressing that farmers could not do such things.

Will demand repealing of farm laws at tomorrow's meeting: Farmers' leader

We will demand repealing 3 Farm laws in our meeting tomorrow with govt... It's been raining, so we're trying to get waterproof tents although they're not upto govt standard. We're trying to arrange blankets and warm water for women & elderly: Harmeet Singh Kadian, Farmers' Leader

Won't go back until farm laws repealed, farmers are dying yet govt not taking matter seriously: Leader

Today is 37th day, govt should leave its stubbornness. We won't go back till laws are taken back. It's disappointing that farmers are losing their lives. So many farmers are braving the cold yet the govt is not taking it seriously, said Onkar Singh, Farmers' Leader at Singhu border. Another farmer leader said that sugarcane rate demand letter was given to Punjab Govt, but 1.5 months have gone by & Punjab Govt hasn’t responded. Punjab CM said notification was issued within 1 week. We appeal to Punjab govt to look into the matter. 

Will celebrate Lohri burning copies of farm laws, will celebrate Kisan Diwas on Netaji's bday: Farmers leader

Centre unable to give MSP to farmers, providing fixed price to industrialists for running godowns: Rahul

Farmers at Tikri border amid severe cold, torrential rain forced to demonstrate: Randeep Surjewala

Rajasthan CM, Sachin Pilot join Congress protests against farm laws

Modi govt should remember democracy means protecting farmer rights: Sonia Gandhi

Hope farmers' protest may end tomorrow, says Kailash Choudhary ahead of next round of talks

Union Minister of State for Agriculture Kailash Choudhary on Sunday expressed hope that a solution will be found out of talks with farmer unions tomorrow and their agitation against three agriculture laws may end as well. Speaking to ANI, the minister accused the Congress and some other Opposition of adding fuel to fire in the agitation which has been going on for over a month at different borders of the national capital.

"The Narendra Modi government takes the decision in the interest of farmers and stands with them in their problems. Rahul Gandhi is doing politics (on these laws) and is provoking farmers. Why does he forget that he did not go to meet Anna Hazare in 2011 during his government and the way he forced Baba Ramdev to run away from a protest site? These people are talking about justice and injustice. Narendra Modi government stands with farmers to resolve their issues," Choudhary told ANI.

"We are talking to farmers who are protesting. We are hopeful that there will be a positive result out of talks which will be held tomorrow. Seven round of talks were held in a peaceful atmosphere. Congress, AAP and Communists are adding fuel to fire. They will not succeed. We hope that their issues will be resolved in discussions tomorrow and protest too may end tomorrow," he said.

Heavy rains in Delhi NCR failed to deter protesting farmers' spirits

A sudden drop in temperature coupled with heavy rains on Sunday added to the miseries of farmers protesting against the contentious farm laws at the gates of Delhi. However, farmers seem to be undeterred by the harsh weather. "Rain has spoilt our food, all our clothes and tents have got wet, that is a problem. But, we are determined for our fight. We can bear these small problems but if farm laws are applied then our generations will suffer. We will go back to our homes only when these laws are repealed," a farmer protesting on the Singhu border told ANI.

The national capital received heavy rains on Sunday morning, but the weather failed to lower the spirits of farmers protesting at Singhu Border. However, it did affect food storage. They said that they will not leave the protest site until and unless the government rolls back the three farm laws. Harvender Singh from Ludhiana said that they are habitual of cold weather, he said these are god blessing showering on them. "Rain and cold weather will not stop us. We are here for some reason and will not look back until we succeed," he added.

Shun arrogance of power and withdraw 3 farm laws: Sonia Gandhi

Congress interim President Sonia Gandhi has accused the Modi government of "arrogance", asking it to shun its arrogance of power, follow the 'raj dharma', and withdraw the three "black" farm laws. "There is still time for the Modi government to come out of arrogance of power and withdraw the three new central farm laws to end the farmers agitation. This is 'raj dharma' (righteous conduct of ruler) and a real tribute to the departed souls of farmers who have died since the beginning of the protest," she said in a statement.

"Since Independence, it is for the first time that an arrogant government has come to power. It is not even looking at the pain and sufferings of farmers, forget about the common man," she claimed. The Congress chief said that she and the countrymen were distressed by seeing the fate of the 'annadatas' in chilly and rainy weather due to government apathy. More than 50 farmers have lost their lives, some due to suicide, due to government's conduct, she added.

Congress flays govt for 'apathy' towards protesting farmers

Even as farmers continued to protest on the Delhi borders for the 39th day on Sunday, the Congress acccused the Union government of showing "apathy" towards 'annadatas' braving cold and rain to save their dignity. "The one word the BJP-led government has justified in the last 39 days is 'apathy'. One one hand, there is complete lack of sensitivity towards the plight of protesting farmers and their demands and, on the other hand, close friends of this government are receiving complete empathy and blessings for expanding their dominance in all spheres of business," Congress spokesperson Gourav Vallabh told the media here.

He said that while farmers received only false promises after their protest, friends of this government were getting contracts after contracts to fill their pockets. "It is a matter of serious concern as all this is happening as farmers continue to protest," he added. The Congress spokesperson alleged that Adani Agri Logistics Limited (AALL) was awarded an exclusive service agreement with the Food Corporation of India for storage of foodgrains, while the FCI had not even started lifting rice stocks yet in Chhatisgarh.

He claimed that despite a pre-intimation by the central agency to procure 60 lakh metric tonnes of rice under the central pool for the kharif season, Chhattisgarh has not received the final consent yet. "The Chhattisgarh government started procurement on December 1, and has procured 47 lakh tonnes from 12 lakh farmers so far. But the state is yet to receive consent from the government of India, despite several requests on phone. This will impact close to 21.52 lakh farmers," Vallabh added.

Rains, waterlogging cause inconvenience to farmers protesting at Delhi borders

Waterlogged tents, soaked firewood and blankets, and cold conditions -- farmers camping at Delhi borders in protest against new farm laws had a difficult morning on Sunday due to overnight rains. The continuous downpour led to waterlogging at agitation venues and waterproof tents did not help much, according to the protesters. Farmer leader Abhimanyu Kohar, who is a member of Sankyukt Kisan Morcha, said farmers have waterproof tents but they cannot protect them from biting cold and waterlogging.

"The situation is very bad at protest sites due to rain which has caused waterlogging. There is so much cold after the rains, but the government is not able to see our misery," he said.  Gurwinder Singh, who is camping at Singhu Border, said there is waterlogging at some places as civic facilities are not up to the mark but asserted that the weather will not dampen the spirit of farmers who have been protesting for over a month. "Despite facing several problems, we will not move from here until our demands are met," he said.

According to a MeT Department official, heavy rainfall was reported in areas across Delhi and minimum temperatures have increased due to clouding and easterly winds.

Farmers' protest continues despite rain, cold wave

Despite rains and the ongoing cold wave across North India, farmers agitating against the Centre's farm laws stood strong at the borders of the national capital and continued their protest for the 37th day on Sunday.

"We are living on the streets in such harsh weather conditions away from our family. We're hopeful that the government will accept our demands tomorrow," a protesting farmer at the Gazipur (Delhi-UP) border told ANI.

Farmers were seen huddled together under blankets inside their vehicles to keep warm. Tents were set up with waterproof tarpaulin sheets as protection from the rain.

Another round of talks between the Union government and the farmers' unions took place on Wednesday. While a consensus was reached on issues related to the environment and Electricity Act, the deadlock continued on the two main demands, legal assurance on Minimum Support Price (MSP) and complete rollback of the three farm laws.

The next round of talks will take place on January 4.

Chilla, Gazipur borders closed, Delhi Traffic Police urges commuters to take alternative routes

In view of the ongoing farmers' agitation at the gates of the national capital, the Delhi Traffic Police on Sunday appealed to citizens to take alternative routes as Chilla and Gazipur borders remained closed due to the protests.

"Traffic Alert The Chilla & Ghazipur Borders are closed for traffic coming from Noida & Ghaziabad to Delhi because of farmer protests. Please take alternate route for coming to Delhi via Anand Vihar, DND, Apsara, Bhopra & Loni Borders," Delhi Traffic Police wrote on Twitter.

The police said that the following borders are open to Haryana -- Jharoda, Daurala, Kapashera, Badusarai, Rajokri NH 8, Bijwasan/Bajghera, Palam Vihar, and Dundahera with COVID-19 precautions.

Farmers are 'satyagrahis', will take rights from govt: Rahul

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday slammed the government on the agitation by farmers, whom he equated with 'satyagrahis' who will take their rights from the government.

"The country is facing a tragedy like Champaran; then, the British were Company Bahadur, and now the friends of PM are Company Bahadur," he tweeted in Hindi.

"But the agitating farmers are 'satyagrahis'; they will take their rights," he added.

Satyagraha denotes a policy of passive political resistance, especially that advocated by Mahatma Gandhi against the British rule in India.

Heavy rains add to woes of farmers protesting at Delhi borders

Overnight rains in the national capital added to miseries of farmers who have been camping on the borders of Delhi for over a month in protest against new farm laws, with the continuous downpour leading to waterlogging at agitation venues.

Farmer leader Abhimanyu Kohar, who is a member of Sankyukt Kisan Morcha, said on Sunday that farmers have waterproof tents but they cannot protect them from biting cold and waterlogging.

"The situation is very bad at protest sites due to rain which has caused waterlogging. There is so much cold after the rains, but the government is not able to see our misery," he said.

Rain fury

Farmers continue to hold sit-in protest at Ghazipur (Delhi-UP border)

Karnataka govt to assist farmers double their income, says CM Yediyurappa

Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa on Saturday said that the state government is working towards "enabling farmers to double their income" as envisaged by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In his inaugural address at the Horticulture Mela organised by the University of Horticulture, Bagalkote, Yediyurappa said that government intends to introduce new technologies in value addition, processing, storage and packaging of horticulture produce in collaboration with Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI) and Indian Institute of Horticulture. He also assured that the government would take all necessary steps to consider Horticulture as an industry.

Punjab CM could have prevented the farm laws from being passed: AAP

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Saturday said Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh could have prevented the farm laws from being passed in Parliament if he wanted but did not do so. AAP national convenor and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal alleged that the Punjab Chief Minister is trying to protect his son from the Enforcement Directorate lens and Union Home Minister Amit Shah is also helping the Punjab CM in his tactics."

Punjab farmers send legal notices to 3 BJP leaders for defaming their agitation

Punjab-based farmers have sent legal notices to Union Minister Giriraj Singh, Gujarat Deputy CM Nitin Patel and BJP leader Ram Madhav for their alleged defamatory/ derogatory statement regarding ongoing agitation at various Delhi borders against the agriculture laws. Farmers have sent the notices seeking an unconditional apology and unambiguous withdrawal of the alleged defamatory and derogatory statements made by the three leaders, ANI reported.
Statements by several political leaders have not issued in good faith or with responsibility, but mala fide intent and for oblique motives to further vested interests and defame the protesting farmers, read the notice.
A farmer from Amritsar, Jaskaran Singh Bandesha through notice to Giriraj Singh stated that farmers relentlessly giving their blood and sweat for the entire nation, and are widely considered to be the backbone of the entire country's economy and the agricultural system.

Congress leaders in Rajasthan to protest against farm laws tomorrow

Several leaders from Rajasthan Congress including Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, party's state unit chief Govind Singh Dotasara, former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot will stage a protest at Jaipur's Shaheed Smarak demanding the repeal of new agriculture laws. Meanwhile, a number of farmers are protesting at different sites in the state against the contentious Acts.
Rashtriya Loktantrik Party (RLP) has also withdrawn support from the NDA against these acts.
Farmers have been protesting at different borders of the national capital for over a month against the Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020, and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.

Farmer impasse likely to be resolved on Monday

After the last meeting of the government and farmers led to positivity and breaking of bread together, it appears that the over month-long deadlock may be resolved on Monday. Sources on both sides have indicated a thaw with a meeting ground on some of the most contentious issues emerging. The government may well be ready to offer amendments to the MSP and APMC issues in writing, IANS reported.
As per the government and farmer sources, Monday will see a big breakthrough after more than six rounds of talks between the two parties have been held. The sticking points of MSP being retained and APMC may well see a resolution.
In addition, at the 'mandis', the private players who are procuring will not be able to procure below the MSP. The dispute redressal system between the private players and the farmers will not be done by the SDM anymore. These have been some of the major demands of the farmers. Farmers do not want to be dragged out of their workplaces to run around needlessly to sort out issues.

75-year-old farmer protesting against agri laws kills self at Uttar Pradesh-Delhi border

A 75-year-old farmer protesting against the Centre's new agri laws allegedly hanged himself at the Uttar Pradesh-Delhi border in Ghazipur on Saturday morning. Sardar Kashmir Singh, a native of Bilaspur in Uttar Pradesh's Rampur district, hanged himself in a mobile toilet using a rope, police said. Deputy Superintendent of Police of Indirapuram Anshu Jain told PTI that a suicide note written in Gurumukhi was found on him.
Singh wrote in the suicide note that the government must repeal these farm laws as these are against the interests of farmers, according to a leader of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU).
The BKU and several other farmer unions have been spearheading the protest against the legislations at various border points of Delhi for over a month now. In the purported suicide note, Singh expressed anguish that though some people from Punjab died during the agitation, no one from Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand has sacrificed his life for the cause.

Will hold tractor parade towards Delhi on Jan 26 if demands not met: Farmer unions

Hardening their position ahead of the next round of talks with the government, protesting farmer unions on Saturday said they will take out a tractor parade towards Delhi on January 26, when the country will celebrate Republic Day, if their demands are not met. Addressing a press conference, the union leaders said time has come for "decisive" action as their demands have not been addressed by the government yet.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will be the chief guest at the Republic Day parade at Rajpath on January 26. Farmer leader Darshan Pal Singh said their proposed parade will be called "Kisan Parade" and it will be be held after the Republic Day parade.
The next round of talks between the government and the protesting farmer unions is scheduled to be held on January 4. On Friday, the unions had announced that they would have to take firm steps if the meeting fails to resolve the deadlock. After the press conference, farmer leader Abhimanyu Kohar told PTI that farm unions are hopeful for the January 4 meeting, but they cannot trust the government going by their experience with them.

Farmers to march into Delhi on Jan 26 if demands not met: Samyukt Kisan Morcha

The Samyukt Kisan Morcha on Saturday announced that farmers will march into Delhi on January 26 with their tractors, trolleys and other vehicles if their demands are not met and also said that a "farmers' republic parade" will take place after the official parade.
In its first press conference organized by the 7-member Coordination Committee of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha in the national capital, Samyukt Kisan Morcha, a joint front of almost 40 farmer organisations, also announced their plan of action till January 26 to intensify and deepen the agitation. A fortnight of a nationwide campaign called "Desh Jagriti Abhiyan" from January 6 to 20 will include rallies, conferences and dharnas all over the country.
Lohri/Sankranti will be marked as Kisan Sankalp Diwas by burning the copies of the three laws and January 18 will be celebrated as Mahila Kisan Diwas to underline the role of women farmers. Azad Hind Kisan Diwas will be marked on Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose's birth anniversary on 23 January by protesting outside Governors' official residence in all state capitals.

Govt's commitment to welfare of farmers unparalleled: Javadekar

A day after over 850 academicians came out in support of three agricultural laws, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said that the central government's commitment to the welfare of farmers is 'unparalleled'.
"More than 850 academicians across the country have come out in support of the new farm laws, saying that they will change farmers' fortune and will free farming from all wrong practices. Our government's commitment to the welfare of farmers is unparalleled," Javadekar tweeted.
On Friday, over 850 academicians from different parts of the country came out strongly in support of the agricultural reform laws brought by the government, saying these Acts seek to free farm trade from restrictions and enable farmers to sell their produce at competitive prices.

News that govt has accepted some of our demands is a lie: Yogendra Yadav

Unions give a call to tractor parade towards Delhi on Jan 26

We have given a call for a tractor parade towards Delhi on January 26, say protesting farmer unions

50 farmers have been martyred during the agitation: Union Leader

So far, over 50 farmers have been "martyred" during our agitation, says farmer leader Ashok Dhawale at press conference

Over 850 academicians support new farm laws, say these open market beyond 'mandis'

Over 850 academicians from different parts of the country have strongly supported the agricultural reform laws brought by the government, saying these Acts seek to free farm trade from restrictions and enable farmers to sell their produce at competitive prices.
In a statement, the academicians who also include a few Vice-Chancellors, said that union government has repeatedly assured the farmers that these three farm laws will not do away with Minimum Support Price (MSP) "but rather free the farm trade from all illicit market restrictions, open the market beyond 'mandis' and further assists the small and marginal farmers to sell their produce at market/competitive prices".
"The new laws also provide full autonomy for farmers to sell their produce. We strongly believe in the government's assurance to the farmers to protect their livelihoods. The government is still firmly committed to delivering the principle of minimum government, maximum governance," the statement said.
It said that the laws were brought under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi as part of agenda for agro-reforms to benefit the farmers.

Farmers to hold tractor rally on Jan 6 if talks fail

Farmers' organisations under the Samyukta Kisan Morcha, after a meeting at Singhu border, on Friday said that if the talks with the government on January 4 fail then they will intensify the protest and hold a tractor rally on January 6.
Bharatiya Kisan Union (Lakhowal) General Secretary Harinder Singh Lakhowal told IANS, "The topics of the next round of talks with the government were discussed in the meeting. The government has agreed to our two demands, but two important demands are yet to be discussed on January 4. If these two demands are not negotiated during the talks with the government, then a tractor rally will be taken out on January 6."

Trains short terminated/ diverted due to farmers' agitation in Punjab

Due to farmers' agitation in Punjab, some of the trains operated by Northern Railway have been short terminated/diverted.
"The 02715 Nanded-Amritsar express of January 2 will be short terminated at New Delhi. Consequently, the 02716 Amritsar-Nanded express of January 4 will short originate from New Delhi and remain partially cancelled between New Delhi-Amritsar-New Delhi," Northern Railway said in a press release. The 02903 Mumbai Central-Amritsar express special of January 1 will be diverted to run via Beas-Tarntaran-Amritsar.
The 02904 Amritsar-Mumbai Central express special of January 2 will be diverted to run via Amritsar-Tarntaran-Beas.
The 02925 Bandra Terminus-Amritsar express special of January 2 will be diverted to run via Beas-Tarntaran-Amritsar.
The 02926 Amritsar-Bandra Terminus express special of January 2 will be diverted to run via Amritsar- Tarntaran-Beas.
The 04650 Amritsar-Jaynagar express special of January 2 will be diverted to run via Amritsar-Tarntaran-Beas.
The 02025 Nagpur-Amritsar express special of January 2 will be diverted to run via Beas-Tarntaran-Amritsar.

Farmers threaten to intensify agitation if demands aren't met by Jan 4

Just days ahead of the crucial seventh round of talks with the government, agitating farmers hardened their stand saying that of if no concrete decision is taken by January 4 (the next round of talks) then they will intensify their agitation and hold a massive tractor march two days later on January 6.
The farmers’ leaders also said that if talks with the government do not progress in the right direction, those protesting at the Haryana-Rajasthan border will also move towards Delhi. Read on...

57-year-old farmer dies of heart attack while protesting against Centre’s farm laws at Ghazipur border

57-year-old farmer dies of heart attack while protesting against Centre’s farm laws at Ghazipur border in Uttar Pradesh’s Ghaziabad: Police

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