Sandeep Singh: Police Abuse Rains Down On Farmers Demonstrating In Hisar

The Farmers’ Protest is still going strong in Haryana. 

Sandeep Singh
May 17, 2021 | 2.5 min. read | Original Reporting

The Farmers’ Protest is still going strong in Haryana. 

At a time when India’s second COVID-19 wave has obviously owned headlines and broadcasts across the country, police brutality and violence against a farmer’s demonstration in Hisar has put the movement back into the limelight. 

Haryana Chief Minister, Manohar Lal Khattar, was on his way to visit the city to inaugurate a temporary COVID hospital when farmers from various districts came to protest his arrival. 

Thousands of tractors, trolleys, cars, bikes, and marchers were met with police blockades. Farmers chanting slogans and using their tractors breached barriers on the outskirts of Hisar, bringing back memories of Delhi Chalo in late 2020. Farmers were then injured with police unleashed violence against them. According to a report in The Tribune, 40 farmers and 20 police officers were injured.

In viral videos, the police are seen brutally beating farmers with lathis, pelting stones, and even a case of an officer holding a brick in a throwing position. Haryana police also fired tear gas. 

One of those that experienced the brutality was Harshdeep Moth. 

“Farmers who stood their ground against the police lathi-charge got really abused and injured. I was with farmers who sat on the road and had told police that they are ready to get lathi-charged and even shot. They beat up me so brutally that the policemen broke three lathis on me.” 

I talked to a female farmer whose blood-soaked picture has been making the rounds on social media. Nirmala, 53, had specifically made the trek to Hisar to join in on the demonstration.

“We were protesting and then I saw a young boy hit by a tear gas shell. I went up to him and then I too got hit by tear gas. Then there was blood on my face.” 

Nirmala was taken to a private hospital where she got treatment. 

88 farmers including Moth were arrested. 

“They were trying to get us booked under IPC’s Sections 107 and 151, but I told my farmer friends not to sign any document.”

When photos of farmers getting attacked and reports of arrests reached farm leaders, they came into action. 

Farm leader Gurnam Singh Chaduni and Abhinmayu Kohar issued a video statement in support of farmers. Farmers were told to block the roads and they had even planned to protest outside the police station if the police did not release the farmers.

After negotiations, Hisar Police released all those arrested. As a result, farmers unblocked the roads as their demands had been met - for now. 

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Sandeep Singh hails from Machhiwara, Punjab. As an independent journalist, he has worked with many prominent Indian news organizations. Sandeep has been following the farmer’s protest in Punjab since its onset and traveled with them to Delhi. He spends most of his time at the Singhu border protest site. You can follow Sandeep on Twitter @Punyaab


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