Farmers protesting against the Centre’s Farm Laws have announced their decision to continue to sit-in protests at Delhi borders despite a sharp rise in Covid-19 cases. The Centre and Haryana government have urged farmers to vacate the protest sites, but protesting farmer union leaders have urged the opposite. Most farmer leaders have claimed that there are no reports of COVID cases at protest sites.
Bhartiya Kisan Union (Ekta Ugrahan), a Punjab-based farmers’ union has also announced a march to Delhi on April 21 as their continued protest against the Farm laws. This march comes when Delhi is going through a surge in Coronavirus cases. The farmer union leaders said apart from farmers, women, tribal, unemployed people, and socially disadvantaged groups will also participate in the march.
Farmer Union, Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) has launched the ‘Phir Delhi Chalo’ movement from April 24, marking 150 days since the start of the Farmer protests. Now that the reaping season is over, farmer leaders are asking farmers to return to the protest sites and form a joint forum against the Farm Laws. No restrictions to be imposed on farmers who wish to travel from their native villages to take part in the protests at Delhi.
Yogendra Yadav further alleged the government to be hatching a conspiracy in the garb of anti-Covid measures to crush their protest. Awareness about health and hygiene protocols one needs to adopt given Covid-19 will be spread and all Protestants will be asked to wear masks, added Yogendra Yadav. The farmer leaders stated that vaccination camps will be set up at all protest sites. Anyone above 45 years can walk in and get vaccinated at the same.
Thousands of farmers are protesting against the Centre’s Farm Bills since November 2020 at three sites around Delhi– Tikri, Singhu, and Ghazipur. The protestors are mainly from Punjab, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh.
Delhi: Facing delay in Oxygen supply due to blockage by Farmer protests-
Oxygen supplier, Inox Air Products, has written to the Government of India saying tankers were delayed due to roadblocks by Farm Law protestors in Delhi.
For the last two days, Delhi is facing an acute shortage of oxygen, it has been revealed that the supply of the vital gas has been disrupted by the ongoing farmer protests in and around Delhi.
According to Inox Air Products, a supplier of oxygen, to the central government, their vehicles carrying oxygen have to travel an additional distance of 100 km from their unit in Modinagar, Uttar Pradesh to reach hospitals in Delhi due to the farmer protests.
Inox Air Products in its letter to the central government mentioned that they are facing blockages while transporting oxygen from their plants in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh to Delhi due to the highway blockades enforced by the protestors. 2 days back, Sri Balaji Action Medical Institute in Paschim Vihar, Delhi had almost run out of oxygen. This happened as the delay of liquid medical oxygen to the hospital was delayed by 2 hours due to the blockade of NH24 on the Delhi-UP border at Ghazipur by the farmers.
Due to this situation, the company requested the union government to extend support for making green corridors for the movement of tankers and trucks carrying oxygen towards Delhi and other covid affected regions.
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