Waterlogged tents, soaked blankets: Protesting farmers at Delhi borders brave cold conditions, downpour

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Updated: January 03, 2021 7:31 PM

The continuous downpour led to waterlogging at agitation venues and waterproof tents did not help much, according to protesters.

famers protestAccording to a MeT Department official, heavy rainfall was reported in areas across Delhi and minimum temperatures have increased due to clouding and easterly winds. (ANI photo)

Waterlogged tents, soaked firewood and blankets, and cold conditions — farmers camping at Delhi borders in protest against new farm laws had a difficult morning on Sunday due to overnight rains.

The continuous downpour led to waterlogging at agitation venues and waterproof tents did not help much, according to protesters.

Farmer leader Abhimanyu Kohar, who is a member of the Sankyukt Kisan Morcha, said farmers have waterproof tents but they cannot protect them from biting cold and waterlogging.

“The situation is very bad at protest sites due to rain which has caused waterlogging. There is so much cold after the rains, but the government is not able to see our misery,” he said.

Gurwinder Singh, who is camping at the Singhu Border, said there is waterlogging at some places as civic facilities are not up to the mark but asserted that the weather will not dampen the spirit of farmers who have been protesting for over a month.

“Despite facing several problems, we will not move from here until our demands are met,” he said.

According to a MeT Department official, heavy rainfall was reported in areas across Delhi and minimum temperatures have increased due to clouding and easterly winds.

“Safdarjung observatory recorded a minimum temperature of 9.9 degrees Celsius…with 25 mm rain. Palam observatory recorded a minimum temperature of 11.4 degrees Celsius with 18 mm rain. Rain with hail storm is expected until January 6,” the official said.

Thousands of farmers, mostly from Punjab and Haryana, have been camping at three Delhi border points — Singhu, Tikri and Ghazipur — for more than a month, demanding repeal of the three farm laws and a legal guarantee for Minimum Support Price (MSP) and two other issues.

Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ugrahan) leader Sukhdev Singh, whose outfit is leading the protest at Tikri border, said arrangements made by farmers to brave the cold weather are not helping much because of rains and subsequent waterlogging.

Veerpal Singh, a protesting farmer, said their blankets, clothes and wood are soaked.

“Our clothes are soaked due to waterlogging caused by rains. Besides, we are facing difficulties to cook food as rain water has also soaked firewood. We do have an LPG cylinder but not everyone here has it,” he said.

Dharmveer Yadav, who is camping at the Ghazipur border protest site, said farmers will not move an inch from their agitation venues.

“We are ready to face any problem, be it heavy rain or storm, but we will not leave this place in any condition until our demands are met,” Yadav said.

Rainwater also entered camps at Burari ground and the protesters were seen draining the water out and rearranging their belongings to prevent from soaking in water.

Sukhwinder Singh, joint secretary of Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee Punjab, said, “This is the time when we sow wheat. We work in our fields during night and early hours in Punjab where the temperature is even below the mercury is here. This would not hamper the courage of farmer.”

Gurmel Singh from Patiala district of Punjab, said, “We have not been affected by the rains. We have covered our tractor trollies completely.”

Avatar Singh from Ambala district of Haryana said, “We had made our arrangements considering the possibility of rains. The grain is completely safe and under the tent. But the rains have only created mud due to which people are facing difficulty in walking. We are cleaning the area and trying to clear waterlogging.”

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