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Farmers' 'Delhi Chalo' call: 50 companies of central paramilitary forces deployed in Haryana

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NewsDrum Desk
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Chandigarh, Feb 9 (PTI) Ahead of farmers' proposed 'Delhi Chalo' march on February 13, Haryana Police has deployed 50 companies of central paramilitary forces to maintain law and order in the state with the authorities on Friday asserting that nobody will be allowed to disturb peace and harmony.

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The police have asked the farmers not to participate without permission in a planned march next week and have also warned of strict action if they damage public property, they said.

The Samyukta Kisan Morcha and the Kisan Mazdoor Morcha had announced 'Delhi Chalo' march by more than 200 farmers' unions on February 13 to press the Centre for accepting several demands, including enactment of a law to guarantee a minimum support price (MSP) for crops.

However, the SKM, which had spearheaded the 2020 farmers' stir against the now-repealed farm laws, was not part of the 'Delhi Chalo' march call.

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A three-member team of Union ministers on Thursday evening held a detailed discussion here with the leaders of farmer organisations.

After the meeting, the farmer leaders said the Central ministers have assured them that they would hold a second round of the meeting soon.

However, the farmer leaders said their proposed 'Delhi Chalo' march on February 13 still stands.

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A senior Haryana Police officer on Friday told PTI that as many as 50 companies of central paramilitary forces comprising Rapid Action Force and Central Reserve Police Force have been deployed in the state.

"We are making adequate arrangements to maintain law and order," said the officer.

"We had placed the request for deploying 65 companies and we have got 50," the officer added.

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"Where these forces need to be deployed we have done that," the officer said on the deployment of forces.

Home Minister Anil Vij said the Haryana Police have made fool proof arrangements and nobody will be allowed to disturb peace in the state.

Besides making elaborate security arrangements, the Haryana Police will seal the state's borders with Punjab to prevent the farmers from heading towards the national capital, officials said.

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The farmers have planned to head to Delhi from the Ambala-Shambhu border, Khanauri-Jind and the Dabwali border.

The police have already stocked up concrete blocks, barbed wire, sandbags, barricades and other items at the Shambhu border in Ambala to stop the protesters from marching towards the national capital.

A senior police official in Jind district told PTI on Friday that they have arranged barbed wire, containers, barricades and concrete blocks etc and will seal the entry point from Punjab.

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The police official said the sarpanches in nearby villages have held their meetings and have assured the authorities that they will not be participating in the march.

In Ambala, Inspector General of Police (Ambala range) Siwas Kaviraj, Superintendent of Police Jashandeep Singh Randhava and Ambala Deputy Commissioner Dr Shaleen visited Haryana-Punjab border near Shambhu toll plaza and assessed the security arrangements there.

The police directed petrol pump dealers in Ambala not to give fuel to those who were sporting farmer's union flags on their vehicles.

Water cannon vehicles and drone have been deployed at the Shambhu border, officials said.

Meanwhile, the farmer unions in Ambala have also been making preparations for the 'Delhi Chalo' march.

They have been conducting meetings in various villages and have also been arranging food items to carry along with them while marching toward Delhi.

The Ambala district magistrate has imposed Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) in the district. The district administration has written to 400 village 'Sarpanches', persuading them not to participate in the agitation.

On Thursday, police in Ambala had asked the farmers not to participate without permission in a planned march to Delhi next week and warned them of strict action if they damage public property.

The warning was issued in notices to several farmer leaders gearing up to take part in 'Delhi Chalo' agitation.

The police had also said if agitators damage public property, strict action will be taken against them under the Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act.

Loss to government property will also be compensated by attaching the property and seizing bank accounts of the protesters, police said.

The police have already asked the farmers not to give their vehicles on rent or to any farmer otherwise these will be impounded and registration will be cancelled.

Besides a legal guarantee for minimum support price (MSP), the farmers are also demanding implementation of the Swaminathan Commission's recommendations, pensions for farmers and farm labourers, farm debt waiver, withdrawal of police cases and "justice" for victims of the Lakhimpur Kheri violence.

In 2020, a large number of farmers from Punjab and nearby areas of Ambala gathered at the Shambhu border and broke police barriers to march towards Delhi.

The farmers, mainly from Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh, held a year-long protest on Delhi's border points -- Singhu, Tikri and Ghazipur -- against the three now-repealed farm laws. PTI CHS COR VSD AS AS

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