Punjab farmers lift blockade for goods trains till November 5

Farmers raise slogans during their ‘rail roko’ protest over the new farm laws, at Devi Dass Pura village in Amritsar.   | Photo Credit: File photo

Members of as many as 30 farmer unions on Wednesday announced that movement of goods trains will be allowed amid the ongoing ‘rail roko’ agitation against the Centre’s agriculture sector laws.

The decision was taken after the unions held a meeting here. “We have decided to let goods trains go till November 5. The decision has been taken in the wake of shortage of fertilizers and other agriculture-related inputs, besides the festival season,” said Jagmohan Singh, general secretary, Bhartiya Kisan Union (Dakaunda).

Chief Minister Amarinder Singh welcomed the decision, saying it was in the interest of the State’s economy and its revival. He said the farmers had shown their love and concern for the people of Punjab with this move, as it will allow the State to get its much-needed coal supplies. He pointed out that the State had been facing a total power shutdown as a result of coal shortage.

Capt. Amarinder said the easing of the blockade will help the State replenish its critically low urea supplies, thus catering to the urgent need of the farming community for fertilisers.

Spat over Bills

A spat broke out between the ruling Congress and the Opposition, including the Aam Aadmi Party and the Shiromani Akali Dal, on Wednesday over the three amendm-ents Bills relating to agriculture sector that were ‘unanimously’ passed by the State Assembly on Tuesday.

The Akali Dal said the Bills have thrown the farmers of the State “completely back at [Prime Minister Narendra] Modi’s mercy”. AAP termed them parallel to the three Central agriculture legislations, which were not enough to safeguard the interests of the farmers.

Capt. Amarinder accused both AAP and Akali Dal of adopting “double standards” on the Bills after suporting them in the Assembly on Tuesday.

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Printable version | Nov 24, 2020 9:44:45 AM |

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