Rail, road traffic in Punjab hit due to farmers' protest
Chandigarh: Rail and road traffic in some parts of Punjab was partially affected on Friday after representatives of farmer and labour organisations squatted on railway lines and roads to press for their demands, including further relaxations in crop procurement norms.
"Our protest is completely peaceful...if there is any violence it will be initiated from the government side," BKU (Ekta-Ugrahan) General Secretary Sukhdev Singh said.
The demands of farmer organisations included moisture limit of paddy be raised from 17 to 22 percent, discolouration limit be raised from five to 12 percent and MSP of wheat be hiked.
The leaders of farmers organisations accused the Punjab and centre of adopting discriminatory policies towards farmers.
The leaders also dubbed the central team's visit to Punjab to assess loss to paddy as an "eyewash" and said the team did not "bother to visit badly affected areas due to last
week's squall and hailstorm in the region".
Due to the agitation, railway traffic was disrupted in Beas on the Amritsar-Delhi rail line, Sanjouli on Ludhiana-Delhi line, Mansa on Bathinda-Delhi line, Rampura
phul on Bathinda-Haridwar line, Muktsar on Gidderbaha-Amritsar line, Ferozepur-Fazilka line and Jagroan-Ludhiana line.
Ferozepur Division Railway Manager Neeraj Sahay said traffic at some places has been regulated and some local trains had been cancelled as a precautionary measure.
"If the protest is held for a longer period then some long distance trains will also be regulated," he said.
The farmer organisations taking part in the protest include BKU (Ekta-Ugrahan), BKU (Krantikari), Punjab Kisan Sabha, Kirti Kisan Sabha, Kisna Sangrash Committee and Kirti Kisan Samiti, besides seven labour bodies.