Farmers from Punjab leave for Lakhimpur Kheri for protest

Farmers from Punjab on Wednesday left for Uttar Pradesh’s Lakhimpur Kheri to participate in a 72-hour-long protest against the Centre on the call of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha.

The Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) had decided to hold a protest from August 18 to 20 to seek “justice” in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence case.

Farmers are also demanding the withdrawal of cases registered against them during the stir against the Centre’s now-withdrawn farm laws, compensation to families of farmers who died during the course of the yearlong protest and legal guarantee for the minimum support price of crops.

They also demanded the sacking of Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra, whose son Ashish was arrested in connection with the Lakhimpur Kheri violence case.

Eight people, including four farmers, were killed in Lakhimpur Kheri during the violence that erupted when farmers were protesting against Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya’s visit to the area on October 3 last year.

Bharti Kisan Union (Ekta-Ugrahan) president Joginder Singh Ugrahan on Wednesday said they are going to Lakhimpur Kheri on the call of the SKM. “We will participate in the 72-hour long ‘dharna’ there,” he said.

BKU (Ekta-Ugrahan) general secretary Sukhdev Singh Kokrikalan said around 2,000 farmers, including women, left for Uttar Pradesh to participate in the protest.

BKU (Doaba) president Manjit Singh Rai said 10,000 farmers from Punjab will participate in the protest. “Some are going on trains and some on their own vehicles,” said Rai.