New Delhi: Samkyukta Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body of protesting unions, has called a meeting later on Wednesday to discuss the violence that broke out during the farmers' tractor parade in the national capital.
Before the Morcha meeting, representatives of 32 Punjab unions will also meet at the Singhu border, a major protest site against the three new farm laws.
A senior farmer leader said, "The Samkyukta Kisan Morcha will meet around 3 pm on Wednesday and discuss all aspects pertaining to violence that happened during the tractor parade in Delhi".
The Samkyukt Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body of 41 farmer unions, is leading the protest against the three central farm laws at several border points of Delhi.
After violence broke out during the tractor parade on Tuesday, the Samyukt Kisan Morcha had called off the parade and appealed to participants to immediately return to their respective protest sites.
The tractor parade on Tuesday that was to highlight the demands of the farmer unions to repeal three new agri laws dissolved into anarchy on the streets of the city as tens of thousands of protesters broke through barriers, fought with police, overturned vehicles and hoisted a religious flag from the ramparts of the iconic Red Fort.
The Kisan Morcha had disassociated itself from those who indulged in violence during the tractor parade, and alleged that some "antisocial elements" infiltrated their otherwise peaceful movement.
Farmers, mostly from Punjab, Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh, have been camping at several Delhi border points, including Tikri, Singhu and Ghazipur, since November 28, demanding a complete repeal of three farm laws and a legal guarantee on minimum support price for their crops.
Police registers 22 FIRs; examining CCTV footage to identify accused
The Delhi Police has registered 22 FIRs so far in connection with the violence that broke out during the farmers' tractor parade in the national capital leaving over 300 policemen injured, officials said on Wednesday.
An official said multiple videos and CCTV footage are being scanned to identify farmers involved in the violence on Tuesday and that strict action will be taken against the culprits.
Security has been beefed up in several places across the national capital especially at the Red Fort and farmer protest sites, with deployment of additional paramilitary forces following the violence.
Additional PRO (Delhi Police), Anil Mittal, said 22 FIRs have been so far registered in connection with Tuesday's violence.
More than 300 policemen have been injured in the incident, he said.
The SKM had given an undertaking to the police to take out a peaceful rally as per the proposed plans on four agreed upon routes.
However, on Tuesday around 8.30 am, 6,000 to 7,000 tractors assembled at the Singhu border, police said.
Instead of going on the pre-decided route, they insisted upon going towards central Delhi and despite repeated requests, the farmers, led by Nihangs on their horses and equipped with swords, kirpans and fursas, had charged at the police and broke through several layers of barricades, which were erected between Mukarba Chowk and Transport Nagar, the police had said.
Similar incidents were reported from Gazipur and Tikri borders.
The farmers at the Gazipur border broke through the barricades at several points and headed for ITO, where they were joined by the farmers who had come from the Singhu border.
At the Tikri border also, the farmers did not agree to the pre-decided plan and fought with police. They not only broke barricades, but also attacked police vehicles and personnel with deadly weapons. Instead of turning towards Najafgarh, they headed towards Peeragarhi and further towards the central part of the national capital, police had said.
At ITO, a large group of farmers, who had come from Gazipur and Singhu borders, had attempted to move towards Luytens' Delhi. When they were stopped by policemen, a group of these farmers became violent and broke the barricades, damaged iron grills and dividers and even tried to run over the policemen deployed at these barricades, the police had said in a statement.
However, police personnel succeeded in stopping them from entering Lutyens' Delhi. Meanwhile, some farmers also indulged in vandalism and attacked policemen. Later, they changed their plans and moved towards Red Fort, it had said.
At Red Fort, they broke the gates and entered its wells. A section of the crowd also managed to climb atop the rampart of the Red Fort where they hoisted their organisation's flag, the statement had said....