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The Delhi Police on Sunday formally gave permission for the protesting farmers' to hold the proposed tractor rally on 26 January in New Delhi.

However, the nod came with a series of restriction. The police clarified that the farmers can enter Delhi but without disturbing the Republic Day parade. "They can enter Delhi for few kilometres and then exit (at designation spots)," the Delhi police commissioner said.

Farmers' leaders have said the tractor parade will remain peaceful and not affect the official Republic Day parade.

Agrarians from all across the country are marching towards Delhi in order to take part in the scheduled rally. Tractors from Punjab, Haryana, and Rajasthan have reached on Tikri border as the farmers sit in for protest for nearly two months.

Here's all you need to know about the tractor march:

How many tractors will be present?

The Delhi police estimated that about 15,000 tractors are present at Delhi border points now and more are expected to reach soon.

Around 25,000 tractors from Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand will participate in the 'kisan parade' in the national capital on January 26, Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Rakesh Tikait had said on Saturday.

A batch of 500 tractors-trolleys left Amritsar on Sunday and several groups of farmers from Phagwara, Hoshiarpur and other places of Punjab moved towards the national capital to take part of the tractor parade.

Kulwant Singh Sandhu, general secretary of the Punjab Jamhoori Kisan Sabha, said, "Around 2.5-3 lakh tractors will take to the roads near the protest sites. The parade will be absolutely peaceful from our end."

Farmers have also been appealed by their leaders to bring their tractors inside Delhi and not trolleys.

What is the route of the rally?

The Delhi Police has approved total routes spanning up to about 170 km, of which over 100 km will fall in Delhi.

The tractor rally will enter Delhi from Tikri, Singhu and Ghazipur borders. From Singhu, it will pass through Kanjhawala, Bawana, Auchandi border, KMP Expressway and then return to Singhu.

From Tikri border, it will go to Nagloi and pass through Najafgarh and Western Peripheral Expressway. From Ghazipur border, the rally will go to 56-foot road and return to its originating point passing through Kundli-Ghaziabad-Palwal Expressway.

Haryana farmers welcome farmers of Punjab moving towards Delhi to take part in the tractor rally
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Haryana farmers welcome farmers of Punjab moving towards Delhi to take part in the tractor rally (PTI)

What is the duration of the rally?

While the tractor rally is expected to begin after the Republic Day parade, there is no clarity on when the farmers' tractor rally is likely to end.

What security arrangements have been for the march?

The law enforcement personnel deployed for security at the Republic Day parade in New Delhi are required to be on alert for law and order arrangements during the farmers' tractor march, the Delhi police commissioner said on Sunday.

"All officers and men, as well as CAPF and other force deployed for Republic Day Parade security, should remain in a ready position to move at short notice for law and order arrangement in connection with Kisan tractor rally," the commissioner said in a statement.

From the farmers' unions side, it has been clarified that only five people will be allowed on a tractor and strict vigil is being maintained to thwart any criminal activity.

Why are the farmers protesting?

Thousands of farmers have been protesting on different borders of the national capital since 26 November last year against the three newly enacted farm laws - Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; the Farmers Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and farm Services Act 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.

Eleven rounds of talks between farm unions and the government have failed to end the ongoing impasse as the protesters are demanding a complete withdrawal of the laws and legal guarantee for MSP.

The Centre has offered to suspend the laws for up to 18 months at a meeting with farm unions on 20 January. Earlier, it had offered to amend provisions to allay farmers’ fears. Farm unions have rejected both the proposals.

Enacted in September last year, the three laws have been projected by the Centre as major reforms in the agriculture sector that will remove middlemen and allow farmers to sell their produce anywhere in the country.

However, the protesting farmers have expressed their apprehension that the new laws would pave the way for eliminating the safety cushion of MSP and do away with the "mandi" (wholesale market) system, leaving them at the mercy of big corporates.


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