- According to Police, the Tractor rally on R-day has vandalized eight buses and 17 private vehicles
- Protesters of the rally crowded the borders of Delhi before the scheduled time
- When the police stopped them, the clash broke out between the police and protesters that injured 86 cops
During the Republic Day tractor rally by farmers protesting against the centre’s three controversial farm laws passed in September, the Delhi Police filed 22 cases related to violence.
In the first reports of information, several farmers’ leaders were named, say sources, adding the Crime Branch and the Special Cell are likely to probe the violence. A First Information Report (FIR) on the matter is also likely to be submitted by the Delhi Police.
The police said eight buses and 17 private vehicles were vandalized.
The Delhi Police also stated that 86 police officers were wounded in the violence, mostly in and around Mukarba Chowk, Nangloi T-Poin, ITO, Tikri Border, Gazipur, Seemapuri, and Red Fort. At the Ghazipur, Tikri and Singhu boundaries, the baricades were broken.
According to the police, the Sayunkt Kisan Morcha had held several rounds of meetings with the Delhi Police and issued an undertaking for a peaceful rally according to the proposed plans.
But violence started about 8 a.m. after they began their rally – well before the scheduled time and deviated from the agreed routes.
The Police said that at around 8.30 a.m., 6,000 to 7,000 tractors had gathered on the borders of Singhu, and they insisted on moving to Central Delhi instead of the decided road.
A police statement read, “Despite persuasion by Delhi Police, the farmers led by Nihangs on their horses completely armed with deadly weapons such as kripans, fursas and swords, charged the police and broke the several layers of barricades which were established between Mukarba Chowk and Transport Nagar.”
The statement also said that at the ITO – where the police headquarters are located – a large group of farmers who came from the borders of Gazipur and Singhu tried to move to the district of New Delhi.
When the police stopped them, fighting broke out.
The farmers became violent and broke barricades, destroyed the iron grills and dividers, and even attempted to run over the police deployed at these barricades. After reinforcements arrived, the situation was controlled.
Then the farmers planned to drive towards the famous Red Fort, said the police.
They reached the fort’s forecourt, climbed up its ramparts, and hoisted a religious flag outside on a mast. Attempts have also been made to hoist flags atop the fort’s domes.
The police managed to evict them from inside the fort, wielding batons.
The farmers’ group called off the tractor rally in the evening. The Delhi Police have said that the situation is being closely monitored by them.
Police have also recorded cases of breach of lawful directions, rioting, damage to public property and attacking public servants with fatal arms.
The Sanyukt Kisan Morcha said that “the otherwise peaceful movement was infiltrated” by anti-social elements.
The farmers’ group (Sanyukt Kisan Morcha) added, “A long struggle for more than six months and more than sixty days of protest at the Delhi border has led to this situation.”