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Farmers body Samyukt Kisan Morcha calls off tractor rally, says movement will continue peacefully

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The announcement comes after a day of violence in Delhi in which policemen were injured and buses vandalised.

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Amit Chaturvedi

PUBLISHED ON JAN 26, 2021 08:00 PM IST

Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), the umbrella body of the 40 farmers’ unions, on Tuesday called off the tractor rally and said that their movement will continue peacefully.

It also appealed to all participants to immediately return to their respective protest sites.

In a statement, the SKM said that the “movement will continue peacefully” and further steps will be discussed and decided soon.

Explained: What farmers want

The announcement comes after a day of violence in Delhi in which policemen were injured and buses vandalised. The violence started after the farmer organisations deviated from the path decided by the authorities for tractor rally. They pushed towards central Delhi, breaking barricades and facing water cannons.

Some groups of farmers also stormed the Red Fort and hoisted their own flag. In the clashes at the 17th century monument, the policemen were attacked with sticks, leaving some of them injured.

At least 19 people were taken to two Delhi hospitals following violence during the tractor rally. Most of them suffered minor injuries and were in need of first aid, according to doctors from the two hospitals.

The SKM had earlier condemned and regretted the violence that took place in the national capital. It claimed that some “anti-social” elements infiltrated their “peaceful” protest on Republic Day.

“Anti-social elements had infiltrated the otherwise peaceful movement. We have always held that peace is our biggest strength and that any violation would hurt the movement,” the SKM had said in a statement, adding that it dissociates itself from those who have resorted to violence.

The farmers, who have been protesting against three farm laws of the Centre, held the tractor rally to demand the repeal of new acts. Instead of following the marked route, they forcibly entered central Delhi by removing police barricades.

The three laws against which these farmers have been protesting since November 26 are: 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.

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