The farmer protests have continued against the agricultural laws for more than 80 days on Delhi’s borders. Now the crowd at the Ghazipur border protest site has become thinner than before, though BKU leader Rakesh Tikait has already told the farmers “to keep one eye on the border and one eye on their farm.”
The tents in which the farmers used to sleep, are now almost empty. Only a few people are seen eating food at the ‘langars’ or community kitchens.
However, the number of farmers on the border increases on Saturday and Sunday. There are some farmers who come from their villages in the morning and go back again the same evening.
In fact, after the violence on Republic Day, speculation was doing the rounds that the farmers have started leaving Ghazipur border and on January 27 it was clearly visible that people were departing the border.
On the night of January 27, after a passionate appeal from Tikait, the farmers again gathered at the border, coming on tractors, two-wheelers and four-wheelers.
Tikait had given a boost to the protest movement by gathering the farmers on the border, but to continue the movement, a new strategy was devised under which the farmers were clearly told to keep an eye both on their farms and on the border protest site. After that the farmers started returning to their villages and coming back after a few days.
At present, the number of farmers on the border is low, though it is difficult to say whether farmers are quitting the protest movement to go home or just to tend their farms.
According to other farmers at the border, the farmers who are returning to their villages on tractors will come back again. Due to the farm work they cannot sit here continuously.
When Tikait was asked about the lack of crowds on the border, he replied, “It is not that the crowd is decreasing, the farmers will keep coming, they have to manage their fields and also manage the movement.”
“They will not go home till the agricultural laws are repealed. The farmers are not on the streets but are sitting in their tents. We have asked all farmers to be on standby, when the need arises we will call them here.”