Tohana: Rakesh Tikait calls off sit-in protest at all Haryana police stations after release of two arrested farmers

The sit in, which began after the farmers were arrested for trying to gherao JJP MLA Devender Singh Babli’s residence, will continue as one farmer still remains behind bars

Press Trust of India June 07, 2021 15:24:56 IST
Tohana: Rakesh Tikait calls off sit-in protest at all Haryana police stations after release of two arrested farmers

BKU leader Rakesh Tikait with supporters during a dharna outside a police station seeking release of arrested farmers in Tohana. PTI

Tohana: The Samyukt Kisan Morcha called off a plan to hold protests at “all” police stations in Haryana after the release of two arrested farmers on bail Monday but said a sit-in at Tohana will continue since another man is still behind bars.

The two farmers were arrested for allegedly trying to gherao JJP MLA Devendra Singh Babli's residence last week.

“Ravi Azad and Vikas Sisar were released from jail in the early hours after which today's programme to gherao all police stations in the state has been put off,” Bharatiya Kisan Union leader Joginder Ghasi Ram Nain told reporters.

Nain, however, said the ongoing dharna at the Sadar police station compound will continue as one more farmer activist was still behind the bars.

Earlier, farmer leaders had said two activists were behind bars. They also demanded that cases registered against several farmers, including the farmer who is still behind the bars, in connection with the protest against Babli be taken back, he said.

Azad and Sisar were granted bail by a court and were released from jail early Monday.

When asked how long will their dharna continue, Nain said, “One of our colleagues is still behind bars. Besides, there are few other farmers against whom cases have been registered. We are telling the administration that when MLA Devender Babli has apologised and said he has taken back the complaint, then all cases should be withdrawn.

“So, till the time legal process is complete and our colleague comes out from jail and clearance for withdrawal of cases against others comes, the dharna at police station will continue,” he said.

Speaking to reporters after coming out from jail, Azad said the farmers' agitation against agri laws has now become a “people's movement”.

“This is fight of farmers honour and the government will have to rollback the farm laws,” said Azad.

A large number of farmers led by BKU leader Rakesh Tikait have been staying put in the Sadar police station compound in Fatehabad since Saturday.

Besides, seeking release of the arrested farmers, they had also sought the withdrawal of the criminal case against the peasants. An FIR was registered against a group of farmers for allegedly trying to gherao Babli's residence on Wednesday night. Sisar and Azad were booked under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and the Disaster Management Act, 2005.

Earlier, the protesters had also sought the registration of a case against Babli for allegedly hurling abuses at them. Later, the Jannayak Janata Party (JJP) MLA expressed regret over uttering "inappropriate" words against farmers.

On 1 June, Babli faced a protest by a group of farmers who showed him black flags and raised slogans. He had alleged that some of the protesters resorted to unruly behaviour and smashed the windscreen of his SUV. Farmers, however, had accused Babli of using abusive and threatening language.

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