Nationwide ‘Bharat Bandh’ from 11 am to 3 pm on Tuesday: Emergency services will be allowed, say farmer leaders.

DELHI: After several rounds of talks between the government and the farmers who are protesting against the three agriculture laws passed by the parliament in September, demanding nothing less than, that the center roll them back remained inconclusive, the farmer unions have called for a nationwide ‘Bharat Bandh’ on Tuesday, December 8, to mount pressure in support of their demands.  

The band that has been called a day ahead of their sixth meeting with the central government on Wednesday, has received overwhelming support from over 50 trade unions including the transport associations, Railway unions like AIRF and NFIR and the bank unions apart from all major opposition parties.

"There will be complete ‘Bharat Bandh’ on Tuesday," said farmer leader Balbir Singh Rajewal adding, "However, the road blockage or chakka jam will begin from 11 am and will continue till 3 pm, and emergency services like ambulance will be exempted."

Spokesperson of Bharatiya Kisan Union, Rakesh Tikait said that the timings for the ‘chakka jam’ has been set as they don’t want to cause any trouble to the common public.

"Our protest is peaceful & we will continue that way. Tomorrow's Bharat Bandh is a symbolic protest to register our opposition," Rakesh Tikait, said, adding, "We don't want to cause problems for common public. Therefore, we will begin at 11 am, so that they could leave for office on time and end by 3 pm."

Talks between the government and protesting farmers remained inconclusive on Saturday even after several rounds of discussions as union leaders stuck to their demand for the repeal of the farm laws and later went on a 'maun vrat' (vow of silence) seeking a clear 'yes or no' reply. 

Several opposition parties across Indian states have expressed their support to the Bharat Bandh called by the farmer unions on December 8. Major parties, such as the Congress Party, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), Samajwadi Party (SP), Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) among others have extended their support to the Bharat Bandh.

Expressing their support to the bandh, Satish Sherawat, the president of The Indian Tourist Transporters Association (ITTA India) said that, farming and transportation are like two sons of the same father, 51 unions have decided to support the farmers, while Parmeet Singh Goldie, of the Delhi Goods Transport Association, said, "We are supporting our farmer brothers. They are the roots of our business.”

The All India Railwaymen’s Federation (AIRF) general secretary, Shiva Gopal Mishra, met the protesting farmers protesting at Singhu border and assured them that AIRF total support. National Federation of Indian Railwaymen (NFIR) also announced its support to the bandh.


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