WORLD Indian farmers' protest and highway blockade continues


Indian farmers' protest and highway blockade continues


15:16, February 04, 2021

Farmers shout slogans as they burn an effigy of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a protest against the central government's recent agricultural reforms on the outskirts of Amritsar on February 2, 2021. (Photo: AFP)

Hundreds of thousands of Indian farmers and their supporters throughout India continue to protest Wednesday. The demonstrators have been gathered for nearly two months protesting government laws they say help large, private buyers at the expense of Indian farmers. Farmers have been camped outside Delhi for almost two months, blocking the highways and peacefully rallying to urge the government to repeal.

Journalists and protesters have been arrested, and internet access has been blocked in many of the places demonstrators gather this week.

The unrest among an estimated 150 million landowning farmers is presenting one of the biggest challenges to the authority of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The government and the farmers' unions have failed to reach agreement despite many rounds of talks, with farm leaders rejecting the government's offer to delay the laws for 18 months.

Agriculture employs about half of India's population of 1.3 billion.

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