Youth Congress torches tractor at India Gate in protest against farm laws
Youth Congress workers on Monday morning set a tractor on fire near the iconic India Gate in the national capital as part of the protests against the contentious farm sector laws enacted by the Narendra Modi government.
Police said they have detained five persons in connection with the incident that took place around 7:15 AM.
The police said 15-20 people, who claimed to be members of Youth Congress in Punjab, brought the tractor on a Tata 407 to Rajpath at Man Singh Crossing. "They off loaded the tractor and tried to set it ablaze," a police statement said.
Fire brigade rushed two fire tenders to the spot at around 7:42 AM following a call and doused the blaze. The tractor was removed from the spot.
Youth Congress said activists of its Punjab unit demonstrated at the India Gate on the occasion of the birth anniversary of revolutionary freedom fighter Bhagat Singh.
"Our country thrives on the blood and sweat of our farmers. From fighting the British to feeding the entire nation, our farmers are the nation's backbone. "On Bhagat Singh's birth anniversary Youth Congress set ablaze a tractor in protest against the government's anti farmer bills," the Youth Congress tweeted.
Our country thrives on the blood and sweat of our farmers.
From fighting the British to feeding the entire nation, our farmers are the nation's backbone.
— Youth Congress (@IYC) September 28, 2020
The detained persons have been identified as Manjot Singh (36), Ramandeep Singh Sindhu (28), Rahul (23), Sahib (28) and Sumit (28), all residents of Punjab, police said.
The BJP condemned the incident with Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar alleging that the Congress has "shamed" the country today.
"Bringing a tractor in a truck and then burning it at India Gate is a drama enacted by the Congress and we condemn it. The party has been trying to do politics in the name of farmers, and it has been unmasked. It has enacted a drama for publicity," he said.
He said the Congress had in its manifesto promised what the Modi government has done. "Now the Congress is trying to mislead farmers by speaking in a different voice. But it will not succeed," he added.
The government had on Sunday notified the three contentious legislations -- The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farmer Services Act, 2020, The Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020 and The Essential Commodities Act, 2020 -- after getting President Ram Nath Kovind's asset on September 24. On September 25, farmers had held country-wide protests.