3-day rail roko protest in Punjab: What are farmers demanding?
While the majority of participating farmer bodies are from Punjab, the movement has gained support from farmers' outfits in Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, and other states.
Farmers' organizations across India on Thursday ( September 28) called for a three-day rail blockade to emphasize their demands, including financial relief for flood-related losses, a legal guarantee for Minimum Support Prices (MSP), and debt forgiveness. The decision was announced by Sarwan Singh Pandher, the general secretary of the Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee, following a meeting of representatives from 19 different farmers' groups.
While the majority of participating farmer bodies are from Punjab, the movement has gained support from farmers' outfits in Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, and other states. The farmers are demanding for financial relief packages for those affected by floods in northern India, a legally binding assurance of MSP for all crop categories, and comprehensive debt waivers, among other demands.
It is reportedly said that the 'rail roko' protest is taking place at 12 locations in Punjab, including Moga, Hoshiarpur, Gurdaspur, Jalandhar, Tarn Taran, Sangrur, Patiala, Ferozepur, Bathinda, and Amritsar. Several prominent farmer organizations are backing this movement, such as the Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee, Bharti Kisan Union (Krantikari), Bharti Kisan Union (Ekta Azaad), and others from various states.
Earlier this month, around 100 farmers in Maharashtra's Sangli district staged a 'rail roko' protest against the railways' land acquisition. The Maharashtra farmers demanded the acquisition of their additional land by the railways and engaged in consultations with the district administration to address their concerns, leading to a temporary halt in train services.