Anger simmered amongst hundreds of farmers who participated in the protest called by the Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha at Bengaluru’s Mysuru Bank Circle on Monday, September 27, as part of the Bharat bandh. “Farmers have been protesting against the contentious farm laws for a year now and all their pleas have gone unheard. No government has made space to listen to their grievance and redress them. The Karnataka government has not paid heed to the deaths of the farmers across the state and have continually opposed the farmers’ protests,” said Ravishankar, a senior citizen, as he stood among the crowd of protesters who attended the rally.
Led by Kodihalli Chandrashekhar, the protesters marched from Town Hall to the Mysuru Bank Circle, raising slogans against the three contentious farm laws, the Union and state governments. Dalit organisations, pro-Kannada organisations and other Left organisations, too, marched in solidarity with the farmers, playing percussion instruments and demanding that the Union government repeal the farm laws.
“Over a hundred farmers have been protesting in and outside Delhi and we support them. We will continue to protest until five crore farmers reach Delhi and force the Union government to acknowledge them and take action towards repealing the farm laws,” Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha Secretary Gopala told TNM.
Echoing similar thoughts, Mallu K, state coordinator of the Karnataka Sexual Minorities Forum (KSMF), said that there are persons from the LGBTQIA+ community who belong to families of farmers and that the Union government had introduced laws that are detrimental for the farmers, like they did with the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2019.
The protesters began the rally from Town Hall in Bengaluru (TNM)
“The Union government and people’s representative’s silence over the dissent is disheartening. Thousands of farmers have been on the Delhi border facing harsh weather conditions, yet they have not paid any heed. The government has held over five meetings with the farmer leaders, and there did they then not spot Naxalites? Why are they accusing them of being backed by Naxals,” she questioned.
Meanwhile, Arun, a representative from the Dr BR Ambedkar Dalit Tiger Association, told TNM that the Union government has barely done anything for the welfare; instead, have introduced laws that will be detrimental for them. “Dalit organisation has lent support to the farmers’ movement and will continue to do since they are a pivotal part of the society,” Arun added.
In spite of the heavy security, a mishap occurred at the protest wherein a protester ran his vehicle over DCP North Dharamendra Meena’s leg after the police tried to stop his vehicle. The man was arrested by the police.