Farmers from Punjab and Haryana were accorded a rousing welcome with sweets and garlands at several points on their return journey on Saturday for the “victory” of their protests after the suspension of the agitation against the repealed farm laws.
Families of farmers along with fellow villagers at many places on the Delhi-Karnal-Ambala and Delhi-Hisar national highways along with other State highways en route were welcoming and honouring the peasants coming in tractor trolleys with garlands, ladoos, barfi and other sweets.
Villagers and others who supported the farmers’ agitation carrying flags of farmers’ organisations showered petals as they assembled along the highways to welcome them.
Farmer leader Balbir Singh Rajewal was given a warm welcome at the Shambhu border upon his return and he congratulated the farmers for their “victory.” “I congratulate all the Punjabis and the countrymen. A big battle has been won... Also thanks to those who supported it (agitation),” said Mr. Rajewal while talking to reporters.
“We have won the morcha... the Central government was forced to bow down,” he said.
A family came all the way from Chandigarh to welcome farmers near Singhu on the Delhi-Haryana border.
‘Result of penance’
“We are elated and our happiness cannot be described in words. It (the victory) was the result of tapasya (penance) of farmers who faced all sorts of hardships, including harsh weather conditions,” said a Chandigarh resident, who actively supported the farmers’ stir.
Because of the large convoy of tractor trolleys and other vehicles, vehicular traffic slowed down at many places on Delhi-Ambala and Delhi-Rohtak national highways. Some elated farmers, especially youth and women, performed ‘bhangra’ to the beats of ‘dhol’ as they were on their way back to their homes in Punjab and Haryana.
At Khanauri near Punjab, villagers assembled in large numbers to welcome the agitators and also burst firecrackers amid a celebratory mood.
Preparations to welcome farmers were made at different toll plazas too and other places along the national highways.