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Farmers protest: People cross Delhi-Haryana border on foot

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Commuters near Singhu border amid tight security arrangements in view of farmers' 'Delhi Chalo' march, in New Delhi, Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024.

Commuters near Singhu border amid tight security arrangements in view of farmers' 'Delhi Chalo' march, in New Delhi, Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024.

New Delhi: People had to cross the Singhu border between Delhi and Haryana on foot on Tuesday as police blocked the movement of vehicles in view of a farmers' march towards the national capital.

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Police have put up barricades and placed concrete slabs on the road to prevent the protesting farmers from entering Delhi.

Hem Singh, who lives in Haryana's Karnal, said he was going to northeast Delhi to attend a wedding when his bus decided to halt nearly a kilometre from the border.

"My nephew is getting married in northeast Delhi's Gokulpuri on Wednesday and we are stuck here due to traffic. The bus driver has stopped the vehicle a kilometre before the border. We are walking towards Delhi and are not sure whether we will get any vehicle.

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"We were aware of the farmers' march, but had no idea that we would get stuck here. I asked my wife and daughter to go back to Panipat, but my daughter is very excited to attend her cousin's wedding," he said.

Satya Prakash from Himachal Pradesh had no idea that the border was sealed for traffic movement.

"We came all the way from Himachal Pradesh on some work. We have to go to Delhi. The bus driver dropped the vehicle at the border from where we are walking towards the city," Prakash said.

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The farmers propose to march to Delhi to press for their demands, including the implementation of a law to guarantee a minimum support price (MSP) for crops. The protesting farmers' groups are largely from Punjab, Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh.

Satpal Sharma, who was travelling back home to Chhatarpur from Panipat, said the bus conductor charged the full fare.

"We had gone to Panipat to attend a wedding and were returning home in south Delhi's Chhatarpur. The bus conductor charged us the full fare from Panipat to Kashmere Gate and when we asked him to return the amount, he said it was not their fault," Sharma said.

Pintu Singh, who was going to Faridabad from Ambala with his wife and one-year-old daughter, said, "This is not fair on the part of the authorities. How can I cross the border on foot while carrying my daughter in my arms? We have to go to Faridabad and we are not sure whether we will get any public transport." Sonu Kumar was travelling to work at Noida along with his colleagues.

"If the protest goes on for long, we will have to find alternative options. We might also have to think of taking up a room on rent in Noida," he said.

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