Farmers to block key highway near Delhi

6 March, 2021 12:00 AM printer

NEW DELHI: The farmers' agitation against Centre's farm laws, which began on November 26, will complete 100 days today.

Farmers are planning to block a major expressway outside New Delhi on Saturday to mark the day, reports the Hindustan Times.

The protesting farmers will block the six-lane Western Peripheral Expressway, also known as Kundli–Manesar–Palwal (KMP) Expressway for five hours, from 11 am to till 4 pm, Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) announced on Wednesday. The SKM is spearheading the farmers' agitation along with Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU).

"We believe that after these 100 days, our movement will put a moral pressure on the government to accede to our demands, because the weather will also worsen," news agency Reuters quoted SKM spokesperson Darshan Pal as saying. "It will weaken the government, which will have to sit down with us to talk again," he further said.

"The laws are like a death warrant to us," said Pal, adding, "We are prepared for the long haul."

Tens of thousands of farmers are camping at the Delhi borders to protest against the three farm laws termed historic by the Centre. In these 100 days, the farmers have braved harsh weather conditions but remained firm on their demands. They want the repeal of the contentious laws and a legal guarantee on minimum support price (MSP).

The protesting farmers claim that the new laws will weaken the MSP system. The Centre, however, has touted the laws as long-needed reforms in the agriculture sector and says it will bring investment to the market. The government has also assured that the MSP system will remain as it is.

However, farmers fear that it will leave them at the mercy of the big corporates and will end the 'mandi system,' where farmers are assured of a minimum price for their produce.