Farmers Clash With Cops In Heart Of Delhi, Drive Tractors Into Red Fort: 10 Points


Farmers were seen shouting slogans at the iconic Red Fort.

New Delhi:
Thousands of protesting farmers who stormed into Delhi with their tractor rally this morning, poured into the Red Fort complex by afternoon, as violence continued in parts of the city. Visuals from the spot showed them climbing a flagpole below the ramparts of the iconic Mughal fort, from where the Prime Minister addresses the nation on Independence Day. As tractors took over the Ramlila Maidan outside the fort — the original site where they had planned their protest — farmers were heard saying that they will not leave Delhi now. Violence started in the morning as farmers broke barricades and entered Delhi ahead of time and veered from the agreed upon route. Videos from various spots showed them clashing with the police, throwing stones and using sticks and rods.

Here are 10 developments in this big story:

  1. As the country celebrated its 72nd Republic Day, farmers had been given permission to take out their tractor rally in Delhi after the annual parade at Rajpath, a ceremonial road in the heart of the city. Crowds, however, swelled at the borders at around 8 AM even before the parade started and thousands entered the national capital on foot. In central Delhi’s ITO, a police bus was hijacked.

  2. More than 20 tractors entered the iconic Red Fort this afternoon, hours after the farmers’ parade began. Protesters were seen shouting slogans at the Red Fort as they drove tractors with national flags.

  3. Dramatic visuals showed farmers breaching barriers at the Singhu border near Haryana, the epicentre of protests against the farm laws that began late November. More than 5,000 protesters had gathered at various points outside the Delhi border.  

  4. Another clip from Akshardham showed policemen on an overbridge  firing tear gas shells on the protesters standing on the road looking for a cover. Protesters were also seen vandalising a bus even as the leaders repeatedly insisted the protests will be “peaceful”. 

  5. The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) today closed the entry and exit gates at several metro stations as thousands of protesting farmers entered the national capital as they took out a tractor rally against the new farm laws.

  6. Delhi Police has been repeatedly appealing to the protesters to maintain calm.

  7. Three routes were cleared for the farmers to hold the parade – 63-km route near Singhu Border,  62.5 km-long route  from Tikri border, a 68-km long route from Ghazipur border that divides Uttar Pradesh and Delhi.  However, they reached central Delhi’s ITO, 20 km from the planned route. 

  8. Earlier, the centre had opposed the tractor rally on Republic Day in an affidavit in the Supreme Court, stressing it will be “an embarrassment to the nation”.

  9. Eleven rounds of talks have been held between the farmers and the government but there been no breakthrough. 

  10. The farmers have turned down the centre’s last offer to put the laws on hold for 18 months while a special committee conducts negotiations. 


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