The farmers’ protest at the Ghazipur border will continue “till October or November”, announced Bharatiya Kisan Union leader Rakesh Tikait amid multiple layers of metallic and concrete barricades enmeshed with barbed wires put up by the police here on Tuesday.
Repealing the three controversial farm laws, Mr. Tikait said as he got emotional once again while choosing to eat alone below a barricade with a poster stating that Section 144 of the Cr.PC was in force, was the sole solution to the gridlock between the agitating farmers and the BJP government at the Centre.
“This protest will continue till October-November, we have categorically told this to the government. We have enough supplies to last us till then. Jab tak kanoon wapas nahin, tab tak kisan wapas nahin (No farmers will return home till the laws aren’t taken back),” Mr. Tikait announced from the stage a few minutes later.
“Through these barricades, all these steel wires, the supply of foodgrains may stop, but not this protest, not this movement. What happened at the Red Fort on Republic Day was done to defame a particular community, to give this movement a bad name. We know this very well,” he said.
Several groups of farmers aboard tractors made their way to the Ghazipur border from Singhu and Tikri borders, hailing Mr. Tikait as “their leader”. The BKU leader, however, said the protest belonged to, and was led by, “all the farmers of the country”.
At a press conference later, Mr. Tikait alleged that security and police personnel were being used to spread fear among the farmers but the protesters would not back down.
“This battle is beyond language. It’s the emotion that counts no matter which language it is expressed in; we will not let foodgrains be locked in anyone’s coffers. We are planning the way ahead till October; some more farmers will join while some will leave for home but the movement will continue,” he said.
“Just look at the groundswell of support that we got just by asking for water; can you imagine what will happen if we ask the farmers of this country to contribute fire to this movement,” he said.