Another round of talks fails, farmers stay put outside Karnal mini-secretariat

Another round of talks between district officials and farmers protesting over a police lathi-charge last month failed Wednesday and the protesters said they will continue their sit-in “indefinitely” at the district headquarters here.
File Photo : Farmers’ sit-in protest continues outside the mini-secretariat in Karnal
File Photo : Farmers’ sit-in protest continues outside the mini-secretariat in Karnal

Karnal

Into the second day of the dharna, farm leaders said they will stay put at the gate of the complex but will not stop officials and the public from entering it. Their demands centre around the suspension of IAS officer Ayush Sinha, who was caught on tape allegedly telling policemen to break heads of farmers if they cross the line during their August 28 protest.
About 10 farmers were hurt that day when police used force to stop them from marching to the venue of a BJP event in Karnal. The sit-in outside the Karnal mini-secretariat, following a mahapanchayat in the same city, began Tuesday evening after talks between district officials and the farm leaders failed .
The farmers then began marching towards the office complex. Along with some Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) leaders, many spent the night outside its main entrance.
In the morning, volunteers at the protest site were seen preparing tea and serving breakfast, including ‘langar’ from the nearby gurdwaras. The district administration invited a delegation of SKM leaders — including Rakesh Tikait, Yogendra Yadav and Gurnam Singh Chaduni — for a meeting at 2 pm in another bid to end the standoff. But the standoff continued.
“We have to say this with regret that the talks failed completely because the government is adopting an adamant and insensitive attitude,” Swaraj India leader Yogendra Yadav told reporters after the three-hour meeting.
“There is no change in their attitude from what was witnessed yesterday,” he charged.

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