As Republic Day 2021 is nearing, farmers have gathered at the borders of NCR to launch a massive protest against the farm laws which were passed by the Parliament of India in September 2020. Farmers from mainly Punjab and Haryana have gathered in huge numbers near the borders of Delhi along with their tractors in numbers estimated up to 2.5 lakhs. Kulwant Singh Sandhu, general secretary of the Punjab Jamhoori Kisan Sabha, said, "Around 2.5-3 lakh farmers will take to the roads near the protest sites. The parade will be absolutely peaceful from our end."
Delhi Police on Sunday gave permission to the protesting farmers to hold the protests. Police, however, clearly mentioned that "They can enter Delhi for few kilometers and then exit at designation spots. An estimate of 15,000 tractors are expected to participate in the rally and more are also getting ready to reach the borders.
The Delhi Police has approved total routes covering up to 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 the Tikri border, it will go to Nagloi and pass through Najafgarh and Western Peripheral Expressway. From the Ghazipur border, the rally will go to a 56-foot road and return to its originating point passing through Kundli-Ghaziabad-Palwal Expressway.
From the farmers' unions' side, it has been clarified that only five people will be allowed on a tractor. Strict security arrangements have been made. Delhi Police recently informed that over 300 Twitter handles were generated from Pakistan from January 13 to 18 to disrupt the tractor rally by farmers only by misleading people. The Twitter handles originating from Pakistan have been reportedly pushing hashtags linked to the farmers' protest and the tractor rally.
The farmers have been protesting on different borders of Delhi since November 26, 2020, against farm laws. So far eleven rounds of talks have taken place between government and farmer's unions and still, no agreement has been reached. The agitating farmers demand 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.