‘Bharat Bandh’ tomorrow, emergency services allowed

• ‘Govt will have to accept our demands, we want nothing less than withdrawal of new farm laws,’ says farmer leader Balbir Singh Rajewal

Meanwhile, Centre sends countrywide advisory for ‘Bharat Bandh’; asks states to tighten security, ensure peace

A farmer leader on Monday said that the nationwide strike called for tomorrow in the wake of farm laws will be observed from 11 am to 3 pm.

“Our protest is peaceful & we’ll continue that way. Tomorrow’s Bharat Bandh is from 11 am to 3 pm. It is a symbolic protest to register our opposition. It is to show that we don’t support some of the policies of the government of India.”

Rakesh Tikait, Spokesperson, Bharatiya Kisan Union.

“We don’t want to cause problems for common public. Therefore, we will begin at 11 am, so that they could leave for office on time. Work hours in offices will end by 3 pm. Services such as ambulance, even weddings, can go on as usual. People can show their card and leave.”

Rakesh Tikait

There will be complete ‘Bharat Bandh’ on Tuesday, farmer leader Balbir Singh Rajewal said at a press conference.

“Government will have to accept our demands, we want nothing less than withdrawal of new farm laws. Bharat Bandh till 3 pm Tuesday, but emergency services will be allowed.”

Balbir Singh Rajewal

Other farmer leaders protesting near Delhi borders weighed in too.

“Our protest is not limited to Punjab. Even leaders from across the globe, like Trudeau from Canada, are supporting us. Ours is a peaceful protest.”

Nirbhay Singh Dhudike, Farmer Leader

Meanwhile, the Delhi Police on Monday said elaborate security arrangements have been made in view of the ‘Bharat Bandh’ called on December 8 by farmers protesting against the Centre’s new farm laws, and warned that strict action will be taken against those trying to disrupt movement of people or “forcefully” shut shops.

Delhi Police has also appealed to everyone to not disrupt life of common citizens and residents of Delhi.

The agitating farmers have called ‘Bharat bandh’ on December 8 and threatened to intensify their agitation and block more roads leading to the national capital if the government did not accept their demands.

The Centre has asked all states and Union Territories to tighten security during Tuesday’s ‘Bharat Bandh’ called by the farmers unions and supported by opposition parties, while asserting that peace and tranquility must be maintained on that day, officials said.

Talks between the government and protesting farmers remained inconclusive on Saturday even after five rounds of discussions as union leaders stuck to their demand for the repeal of the new farm laws and went on a ‘maun vrat’ (adopt silence) seeking a clear ‘yes or no’ reply, forcing the Centre to call for another meeting on December 9 to resolve the deadlock.

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