Representative image  |  Photo Credit: PTI
New Delhi: Bharatiya Kisan Union spokesperson Rakesh Tikait on Wednesday announced that the ‘Rail Roko Andolan’ will take place on February 18 (Thursday) from 12 pm to 4 pm across the country. Notably, the ‘Rail Roko Andolan’ has been called amidst protest by the farmer groups against the Centre’s new agri laws.
While talking to news agency IANS, Tikait said that the Centre has removed other restrictions but not permitted many trains to ply for the last eight months. He added that due to the Centre’s decision, people were facing various difficulties.
The BKU spokesperson said people from their villages would be participating in tomorrow’s ‘Rail Roko Andolan’ that has been announced by the Sanyukt Kisan Morcha. The SKM is an umbrella body of agitating farmer unions.
In the wake of the SKM’s announcement, the railways has deployed 20 additional companies of the Railway Protection Special Force (RPSF) across the country, with focus on Punjab, Haryana, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh.
Director-General, Railway Protection Force, Arun Kumar today urged “everyone to maintain peace. We will be liaisoning with district administrations and will have a control room in place.”
“We will gather intelligence. States such as Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal, and some other areas will be our focus. We have deployed 20 companies (around 20,000 personnel) of the Railway Protection Special Force in these areas,” he further said.
“We want to persuade them to not cause inconvenience for passengers. We have a four-hour window and we want it (rail roko) to get over peacefully,” Kumar added.
Farmers are agitating against the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act.