New Delhi, September 27 (The Reuters) – Indian farmers have opposed the reforms, saying their livelihoods are being threatened.
For 10 months, tens of thousands of farmers have been camping on major highways around the capital, New Delhi, protesting against the laws in a long-running farmers’ struggle against Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government. read more
“Thousands of farmers have spread to various districts to ensure a nationwide strike aimed at reminding the government to repeal laws introduced in favor of big private companies,” Rakesh Tykoit, a key farmers’ leader, told Reuters.
In Noida, the satellite city of New Delhi, farmers confronted police and pushed them to break barriers. There were no immediate reports of injuries or arrests.
In Gurgaon, another satellite town near the capital’s main airport – farmers blocked the road and blocked traffic, while protesters entered a railway station in the northern suburbs of New Delhi, a Reuters witness said.
Nearly a dozen opposition parties have backed the farmers’ struggle to put pressure on Modi’s administration to repeal the laws. read more
The law, introduced in September last year, regulates the agricultural sector and allows farmers to sell produce to buyers beyond government-controlled wholesale markets, which ensures minimum prices.
Small farmers say these changes could lead to competition from big traders and the loss of price support for key commodities such as wheat and rice.
The government says the reforms are new opportunities and better prices for farmers.
Agriculture maintains almost half of India’s more than 1.3 billion people and accounts for about 15% of the $ 2.7 trillion economy.
Farmers’ union leaders say their protests have not disrupted emergency services.
The protests were generally peaceful but police and farmers clashed during a tractor procession in New Delhi in January and one protester was killed and more than 80 policemen were injured. read more
Report by Mayang Bhardwaj; Additional Report by Anushree Fatnavis Edited by Robert Birsal
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