Protesting Farmers In Haryana’s Kurukshetra Block Highway To Delhi


The ‘MSP Dilao, Kisan Bachao’ mahapanchayat was held in the Pipli grain market, where agricultural leaders from Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, and other neighboring states had come to urge their demand.

In New Delhi: Farmers from Haryana blocked a national highway to Delhi today in protest over not receiving a Minimum Support Price (MSP) in the purchase of sunflower crops because they are dissatisfied with the relief provided by the Chief Minister. At a “mahapanchayat” meeting in the Pipli village of Kurukshetra district, they decided to halt traffic on National Highway 44. On the Delhi-Chandigarh road, traffic has been redirected to reduce congestion.

At the Pipli grain market, farm leaders from the adjacent states of Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, and others had convened for the “MSP Dilao, Kisan Bachao” mahapanchayat.

In accordance with the Bhavantar Bharpai Yojana (BBY) — price differential payment plan — Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Saturday digitally distributed 29.13 crore as interim “bharpai (relief)” to 8,528 farmers for sunflower cultivated on 36,414 acres. Sunflowers were included in the BBY program earlier this year, which is a program through which the state government compensates farmers for produce sold below MSP. For the sunflower harvest sold below the MSP, the state government is providing 1,000 per quintal as interim support under the program.

The state government must purchase sunflower at an MSP of 6,400 per quintal, according to the farmers’ demands.

Olympian wrestler Bajrang Punia attended the mahapanchayat with farmer leader Rakesh Tikait, who spearheaded the massive year-long farmers’ agitation against the now-repealed controversial farm laws and recently received support from the state’s farmers during the ongoing protests against Wrestling Federation of India chief and BJP MP Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh on sexual harassment charges.

On June 6, farmers under the leadership of Gurnam Singh Charuni, the head of Bharatiya Kisan Union (Charuni), blocked the national highway close to Shahabad for more than six hours in a protest at the government’s failure to purchase sunflower seeds at the minimum support price (MSP). To disperse the protesters, police turned to lathicharge and water cannons.

Nine BKU (Charuni) leaders—including the president—were later detained on suspicion of rioting and unlawful assembly, among other offenses.

Some farm leaders spoke before the mahapanchayat today and criticized the government for its “anti-farmers” policies and police measures against their representatives. They asked the recent arrests of demonstrators in Shahabad are dropped and that the government purchase sunflower seeds from MSP.

In an attack on some farmer unions that he said “play politics” on Saturday, Mr. Khattar warned the farming community not to be duped by those who seek to mislead them.

When the state purchased millet at MSP, Mr. Khattar claimed on Saturday, it was later discovered that farmers from other states were also selling their produce in state mandis.

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