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Farmers protest bare-chested in Amritsar against agri bills

Chandigarh: A group of farmers, who squatted on a railway track in Punjab’s Amritsar, went shirtless on Saturday in protest against the three agri-marketing bills passed recently by the Parliament.

Sitting on the rail track, the bare-chested protesters shouted slogans against the BJP-led central government and demanded that the farm bills be withdrawn.

Farmers under the banner of the Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee have been protesting on the rail track near Devidaspura village in Amritsar since September 24.

“Farmers have taken off their ‘kurtas’ and shirts to make the government hear our voice,” Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee general secretary Sarwan Singh Pandher told PTI over the phone.

The committee had announced on Friday to extend its three-day ‘rail roko’ agitation from September 26 till September 29.

The ‘rail roko’ agitation had started on Thursday, forcing the railway authorities to suspend the operation of special passenger trains in the state.

Farmers have expressed apprehension that the Centre’s farm reforms would pave the way for dismantling of the minimum support price system and they would be at the “mercy” of big corporates. The farmers said they would continue their fight till the three farm bills were revoked.

The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill were passed by the Parliament earlier this week and now await presidential assent. PTI

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