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Chaos at Tikri border as protesters clash with police

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Chaos at Tikri border as protesters clash with police
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Protesting farmers heading towards New Delhi, Image credit: PTI

New Delhi: As protesting farmers neared their destination, Delhi police tried to disperse them at the border here, leading to chaos. The police used water cannons and tear gas on farmers at Tikri border near Delhi-Bahadurgarh highway.

The farmers clashed with security forces to breach the national capital borders.

Many of them tried to break the security ring of paramilitary and Delhi Police waiting with tear gas guns.

Heavy trucks and trolleys have been placed by Delhi Police in the way of the marchers, which the farmers pushed and shoved to remove.

They tied ropes to the trolleys they brought with them to clear the way.

Metro stations at bordering areas have been closed by DMRC.

"Entry & exit gates of Brigadier Hoshiar Singh, Bahadurgarh City, Pandit Shree Ram Sharma, Tikri Border, Tikri Kalan and Ghevra stations on Green Line are now closed," DMRC tweeted.

Delhi police is making continuous announcements requesting the farmers not to march forward.

However, the farmers have not given any heed to the requests and are trying to enter Delhi.

Mild lathi-charge was also done to push back the farmers as they tried to cross the security ring at the Tikri border.

In similar scenes at Singhu border Delhi Police fired many tear gas to stop the protesters from entering the capital.

Senior police officers are themselves monitoring the Delhi border situation and have also tried to negotiate with the farmers earlier this morning.

Earlier in the morning farmers resumed journey to Delhi

After spending night under the open skies in Panipat town, thousands of protesting farmers resumed their journey to Delhi on Friday morning.

Coming from Punjab and Haryana in tractor-trailers, they are heading to the national capital to mark their protest over the Centre's new agriculture laws.

Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of farmers of the Bharati Kisan Union Ekta-Ugrahan and the Kisan Sangharsh Committee might start their journey from Sangrur district and Jandiala in Amritsar district, respectively, towards Delhi via Haryana. A day earlier they had positioned themselves in their respective areas.

"This morning (Friday) we managed to break a three-four layer police barricade between Panipat and Sonipat despite the use of water cannons by the Haryana Police," protester Gurdev Singh said. He said on Thursday they broke four to five barricades after entering Haryana.

Farmers on Thursday braved tear gas shells and water cannons to break through police barricades first on the Punjab-Haryana border and then within Haryana.

In Haryana they were joined by an equal number of local farmers.

Punjab legislators Parminder Dhindsa, Sukhpal Khera and Raja Warring were taken into preventive custody by the police.

Several protesters and policemen were injured as farmers broke barricades and threw them down from a bridge ahead of the Punjab-Haryana border in Shambhu near Haryana's Ambala on Thursday.

As per the police estimates, around 3,00,000 farmers from both states are set to reach Delhi.

The farmers affiliated to 33 organisations are part of the United Farmers Front, an all-India body of over 470 farmers' unions that will participate in the indefinite protest in the national capital.

Appealing to the agitating farmers, Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar said: "Will leave politics if there's trouble on MSP (minimum support price)."

He also blamed his Punjab counterpart Amarinder Singh for "inciting the farmers".

Amarinder Singh replied on Twitter: "Shocked at your response. It's the farmers who've to be convinced on MSP, not me. You should've tried to talk to them before their 'Dilli Chalo'. And if you think I'm inciting farmers then why are Haryana farmers also marching to Delhi?"

Meanwhile, condemning the use of water cannon and tear gas, former Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal said: "Today is Punjab's 26/11. We are witnessing the end of the right to democratic protest. The Akali Dal condemns the Haryana government the Centre for choosing to repress the peaceful farmer movement."

He said the battle for the rights of the Punjab farmers cannot be throttled by using water cannons against them.

Supporting the protest by farmers, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said the peaceful demonstration was a constitutional right of the farmers.

The Delhi Police has already asked the farmers not to enter Delhi as they don't have permission to protest in the city.

Farmers protesting against the farm laws have expressed apprehension that these laws would pave the way for the dismantling of the minimum support price system, leaving them at the mercy of big corporate entities.


IANS report with edits

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