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Home / News / India /  Bharat Bandh till 3 pm tomorrow, but emergency services will be allowed, says farmer leader

A farmer leader on Monday said that the nationwide strike called for tomorrow in the wake of farm laws will be observed from 11 am to 3 pm.

"Our protest is peaceful & we'll continue that way. Tomorrow's Bharat Bandh is from 11 am to 3 pm. It is a symbolic protest to register our opposition. It is to show that we don't support some of the policies of the government of India," said Rakesh Tikait, Spokesperson, Bharatiya Kisan Union.

"We don't want to cause problems for common public. Therefore, we will begin at 11 am, so that they could leave for office on time. Work hours in offices will end by 3 pm. Services such as ambulance, even weddings, can go on as usual. People can show their card and leave," said Tikait.

There will be complete 'Bharat Bandh' on Tuesday, farmer leader Balbir Singh Rajewal said at a press conference.

"Government will have to accept our demands, we want nothing less than withdrawal of new farm laws. Bharat Bandh till 3 pm Tuesday, but emergency services will be allowed," said Rajewal.

Other farmer leaders protesting near Delhi borders weighed in too.

"Our protest is not limited to Punjab. Even leaders from across the globe, like Trudeau from Canada, are supporting us. Ours is a peaceful protest," said farmer leader Nirbhay Singh Dhudike at Singhu border.

"The bandh will be observed the whole day tomorrow. Chakka jam till 3 PM. It will be a peaceful bandh. We are firm on not allowing any political leaders on our stage," said farmer leader Dr. Darshan Pal at Delhi-Haryana Singhu border

Meanwhile, the Delhi Police on Monday said elaborate security arrangements have been made in view of the 'Bharat Bandh' called on December 8 by farmers protesting against the Centre's new farm laws, and warned that strict action will be taken against those trying to disrupt movement of people or "forcefully" shut shops.

The agitating farmers have called 'Bharat bandh' on December 8 and threatened to intensify their agitation and block more roads leading to the national capital if the government did not accept their demands.

Eish Singhal, Delhi Police (PRO), said adequate arrangements have been made by the Delhi Police to ensure normal movement of people on roads during 'Bharat Bandh' on Tuesday.

"Delhi Police has also issued a traffic advisory for smooth movement of vehicles and commuters. Anybody who tries to disrupt normal movement, life or forcefully closes shops will be strongly dealt with, as per the law," he said.

Delhi Police has also appealed to everyone to not disrupt life of common citizens and residents of Delhi.

Taking to Twitter, the Delhi Traffic Police on Monday said the Singhu, Auchandi, Piao Maniyari, Mangesh, Tikri and Jharoda borders are closed.

The Centre has asked all states and Union Territories to tighten security during Tuesday's 'Bharat Bandh' called by the farmers unions and supported by opposition parties, while asserting that peace and tranquillity must be maintained on that day, officials said.

In a countrywide advisory, the Union Home Ministry also said the state governments and UT administrations must ensure that the COVID-19 guidelines issued with regard to health and social distancing are strictly followed.

The states and UTs were told that peace and tranquillity must be maintained during the 'Bharat Bandh' and precautionary measures taken so that no untoward incident takes place anywhere in the country, a home ministry official said on Monday.

The 'Bharat Bandh' has been called by the farmers unions who have been protesting the three farm laws enacted in the Monsoon Session of Parliament. Major political parties, such as the Congress, NCP, DMK, SP, TRS and Left, on Sunday came out in strong support of the bandh.

Thousands of farmers, mostly from Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh, are protesting at various border points of Delhi against the new farm laws.

Talks between the government and protesting farmers remained inconclusive on Saturday even after five rounds of discussions as union leaders stuck to their demand for the repeal of the new farm laws and went on a 'maun vrat' seeking a clear 'yes or no' reply, forcing the Centre to call for another meeting on December 9 to resolve the deadlock.

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