Thousands of farmers from across the country are arriving at the National Capital demanding special session of Parliament to discuss the agrarian crisis.
Here are the updates:
Watch: Farmers arrive from Tamil Nadu
Farmers arrive at Ramlila Maidan
Farmers, who will march to Parliament Street on on November 30, have set up camp at the Ramlila Maidan. They came from various States, including Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh.
Traffic was disrupted in many parts of the city as they marched to the Ramlila Maidan in the heart of the city on four different routes — starting at the Anand Vihar, Nizamuddin and Bijwasan railway stations and at Sabzi Mandi.
Banded under the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC), which claims to be an umbrella body of 207 organisations of farmers and agricultural workers, many of the farmers came in trains and other packed into buses and other modes of transport.
Those from Delhi and nearby Punjab and Haryana started collecting around 10.30 am, their leaders said.
On the way to Ramlila Maidan
The farmers’ rally, led by the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee is now on its way to Ramlila Maidan, passing by Sarai Kala Khan.
Civil society lends support
"The agrarian crisis won't be restricted to only the rural for much longer. The pressure will fall in urban India soon enough," veteran journalist P. Sainath has tweeted.
Apart from farmers and agricultural labourers, organisers hope to draw in several thousand students, artists and middle-class urban professionals under the banner of a fledgling forum called ‘Nation for Farmers’. Mr. Sainath is the person behind the forum.
Tamil Nadu farmers arrive
A group of farmers from Tamil Nadu arrived at New Delhi Railway Station on Thursday. Lead by farmers leader Ayyakannu, as many as 350 farmers are marching towards Ram Lila Maidan.
As soon as they got down from the train, the farmers staged a train blockade raising slogans demanding the Central government to fulfill their demands.
Last year, the farmers from Tamil Nadu staged a 100-day sit-in protest in Jantar Mantar. They were, however, unsuccessful in meeting the Prime Minister.
'No more jumlas'
“Over the last one and a half years, farmers have been protesting across the country. This is a culmination, an eye-opener moment for farmers that the government has still not heard their distress,” says V.M. Singh, convener of the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee, the banner organisation of 200 farmer groups which has issued the call for this Kisan Mukti March.
“The elections are around the corner. There is no more time, no more jumlas [empty promises] will be accepted. Farmers are demanding that this government keeps its promises and passes these Bills before its term ends,” he adds.
With Subhash Chandra Bose’s slogan of “Dilli Chalo” on their lips, about 10,000 farmers and supporters are expected to march from five different directions in Delhi towards the vast grounds of Ramlila Maidan where they will camp on Thursday night.
Apart from a full-fledged discussion on agrarian crisis, the farmers want two Bills to be passed in the Parliament. The two proposed legislations are the Farmers’ Freedom from Indebtedness Bill, 2018, and The Farmers’ Right to Guaranteed Remunerative Minimum Support Prices for Agricultural Commodities Bill, 2018. They were introduced as private member Bills in the last session of Parliament. At the time, 21 political parties had indicated their support.