Farmers block railways in Maharashtra, services unaffected
Farmers protesting on the rail tracks near Nashik in Maharashtra, as part of the nationwide Rail Roko agitation called by farmers' unions, on February 18, 2021.IANS

Farmers block railways in Maharashtra, services unaffected

Mumbai, February 18, 2021

Thousands of farmers staged rail blockade (rail-roko) agitation in different parts of Maharashtra, as part of the four-hour all-India protest, although train services remained largely unaffected, officials said here on Thursday.

The Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) and other farmers' organisations led protest marches to railway stations and railway lines in various district like Thane, Palghar, Nashik, Aurangabad, Pune, Parbhani, Yavatmal, while reports were awaited from other districts, said a spokesperson for the organisers.

Led by state and local leaders, the farmers carried banners, flags and posters and raised slogans demanding the repeal of the three new Central farm laws as they attempted to storm rail premises or railway tracks.

However, heavy presence of the local and Railway Protection Forces ensured that services were not hit by the agitation, and there was no impact on the suburban train services in Mumbai city.

In Palghar, Nashik and Aurangabad, the police chased away the protesters as they attempted to squat on the railway tracks and cleared the lines for the train services to continue unhindered.

The police detained hundreds of protestors and later released them as the four-hour rail-roko agitation passed off without any untoward incidents.

The Opposition state Bharatiya Janata Party spokesperson in Mumbai Ram Kadam alleged that the protesters were not farmers but activists of Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party and Congress parties ruling the state.

IANS

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