Sunday, April 18

Farmers’ protest: Delhi govt says no to converting 9 stadiums into detention centers

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The Delhi government on Friday refused permission to the police to turn nine of the city’s stadiums into temporary detention centers for the protesting farmers from Punjab and Haryana who enter the national Capital as part of their protest against the three contentious agricultural laws passed by the Centre in September.

The Delhi police had sought the state government’s nod for the same earlier in the day. “Looking at the situation at borders we think we will required such kind of place to keep the detainees. We are yet to receive a confirmation,” a senior police official said on the condition on anonymity.

Thousands of farmers from Punjab, Haryana, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh, on their way to the national Capital as part of their ‘Dilli Chalo’ agitation, clashed with police on Thursday. The agitating farmers resumed their march and reached Delhi’s border on Friday morning.

The three laws the farmers are protesting against are — The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act 2020.

According to the farmers, these would make them vulnerable to exploitation by big corporations and weaken the government’s procurement system, as part of which the government buys staples from them, such as wheat and rice, at guaranteed prices (MSP).