Hundreds of thousands of protesting farmers have decided to continue their Delhi blockade and to remain at the Singhu border between Delhi and Haryana. Other access roads to the nation's capital have also been blockaded in the Delhi Chalo protest as farmers reject the conditional offer of the government to have a dialogue. Thereafter, senior ministers of the Modi government have had an emergency meeting to decide next steps.
In tonight's Punjabi Diary, we focus on the massive Delhi Chalo protest by Indian farmers who have converged on the Delhi border in protest against the three farming bills recently passed by the Modi government.
Braving tear gas and water cannons, the protesting farmers have decided to stay put at the Singhu border between Haryana and Delhi. They have also blockaded five other major highways leading to the nation's capital, including a major dharna (sit-in) at Tikri.
They rejected the offer by the Modi government to move their protest to Burari maidan in New Delhi, as a precursor to any dialogue with the government. Farmer union leaders called it an 'open jail' and had earlier demanded to be allowed to congregate at Ramlila ground or Jantar Mantar.
Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Agriculture Minister Narinder Singh Tomar held an emergency meeting with JP Nadda, the president of Bhartiya Janta Party at his residence.
Meanwhile, the Congress party has demanded that the three agriculture laws be scrapped completely, accusing the Prime Minister and his ministers of being "arrogant and stubborn" in not listening to the farmers' concerns.
Other stories in this report include:
- Tensions rise between Chief Ministers of Punjab and Haryana, Amarinder Singh and Manohar Lal Khattar
- Bibi Jagir Kaur named SGPC chief for the fourth time. Other office bearers have also been named
To hear the full report click on the audio link above.