Staging a tractor rally in Delhi in protest against the Centre's three Farm Laws, farmer unions on Thursday stated that they were 'rehearsing' ahead of January 26, hoping to participate in a parallel Republic Day Parade.
"We are trying this tractor rally as a rehearsal to see if we can participate in the January 26 parade. Can we not race tractors in the country? We want to give a message to the government to correct its actions. We don't know when this will end. We will see what happens in the talks," said BKU's Rakesh Tikait.
"We have a program to go to Tikri border. All our tractors will be rehearsed. Just the way the government rehearses for the parade, we also have a right to rehearse for the January 26 parade. It is our country too," said another farmer leader.
The tractor rally called by the Sanyuta Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body of 40 farmers' unions began from the Ghazipur border in Ghaziabad to Palwal in Haryana through the expressway. Security has been beefed up at the Eastern Peripheral Expressway, as per the Noida police. Apart from the January 26 rally, the unions are also expected to launch hold marches towards the Governors' Houses in different States on January 23.
This tractor rally comes ahead of the 8th round of talks between the Centre and the farmers which is all set to take place on January 8. So far, 7 rounds of talks between the farmers and the Centre have remained inconclusive with the farmers firm on their demand for a complete rollback on the laws.
From what started as a scheduled protest in the national capital on November 26 and 27, 2020, thousands of farmers are still protesting at the borders of Delhi against The Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020 and The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.