Fri, 26 Feb 2021

NEW DELHI, India - After clashes between protestors and police in several parts of Delhi, farmers on Tuesday, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) said it was calling off the Kisan Republic Day 'tractor rally' "with immediate effect" but said that peaceful protests will continue.

"We have appealed to all participants to immediately return back to their respective protest sites. The movement will be continued peacefully and further steps will be discussed and decided soon," the SKM said in an official statement.

SKM said it condemns and regrets the violence that took place in the national capital during the farmers' protest today.

"Anti-social elements had infiltrated the otherwise peaceful movement. We have always held that peace is our biggest strength and that any violation would hurt the movement," it said.

Earlier Tuesday, farmers held a 'tractor rally' in the national capital to demand the repeal of new farm laws. Protesting farmers did not follow the marked route for their tractor march and forcibly entered areas in central Delhi by removing police barricades.

Agitating farmers reached ITO in central Delhi after breaking police barricades placed opposite old Delhi Police headquarters, and were seen vandalising vehicles. Several people including police personnel suffered injuries during the clash between protesting farmers and police.

Protesters also entered the Red Fort premises in the national capital and waved flags they were carrying from its ramparts. A protestor also went up the mast on the ramparts of the historic 17th-century monument and raised a flag he was carrying at the place where the Tricolour is hoisted.

Farmers have been protesting on the different borders of the national capital since November 26 against the three newly enacted farm laws - Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; the Farmers Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and farm Services Act 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020. (ANI)

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