10,000 farmers protest in Bengaluru, traffic hit | Bengaluru News – Times of India
Around 10,000 farmers gathered in and around Freedom Park, and threatened to step up their stir if the Centre failed to repeal the recently passed agri maketing laws.
Farmers hold rallies across state, warn of Delhi-like sit-in
Farmers took out rallies of varying sizes across Karnataka on Tuesday to show support for their counterparts protesting the new central policies in Delhi. In Bengaluru, members of some 50 organisations, including Dalit, women and workers’ groups, participated in a huge demonstration involving 125 tractors and several other vehicles under the aegis of Aikhya (United) Forum.
By and large, the protests were peaceful in the state, with only a few reports of skirmishes between the marchers and police. But some farmers’ groups threatened to intensify the agitation on the lines of the Delhi stir if the Centre failed to withdraw the three new laws.
“As seen in Delhi, we will surround Bengaluru and create a difficult environment if the Centre doesn’t repeal the farm laws,” Kodihalli Chandrashekhar, the president of the Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha, told protesters at Freedom Park, the main assembly point. He criticised BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi and also said that farmers would oppose the new state law against cow slaughter.
Freedom fighter HS Doreswamy, who attended the gathering at Freedom Park, described the Delhi tractor rally as a historic event, saying the movement should spread across the country. “I congratulate them. They did what they had vowed. Their resilience is commendable. I hope this fight will inspire farmers across India,” he added. Kurubur Shanthkumar, the president of the Federation of Farmers’ Associations, warned of a bigger agitation if the new laws were not scrapped. “This is a fight for survival, and we must win this. Else, the government and corporate companies will crush us,” he alleged.
Authorities used a different approach in every district, restricting the size of the tractor rally depending on the ground conditions. While Bengaluru police allowed 125 tractors, other districts permitted 30 or none. More than 5,000 tractors that were headed towards the tech capital were stopped. Social media was flooded with videos of various organisations raising slogans after they were prevented from entering Bengaluru. Later, these protesters gathered at specific points before marching into the city. Protest organisers had the rally from the Majestic railway station to Freedom Park, a distance of around 3km. In Mysuru, many university students held a silent protest.