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Farmers call off toll-related protest

On intervention of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, the Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) on Thursday called off its 39-day state-wide protest on toll plazas.

‘The Chief Minister has assured to sympathetically look into all the demands and issues of the farmers and called us for a detailed discussion on 13 December. On his assurance, we called off our protest,’ said Rakesh Tikait, national president of BKU.

According to Tikait, the government has, in principle, accepted all their demands and assured to protect the interests of the farmers. The farmers, in the leadership of BKU, were protesting on various toll plazas, demanding free access to their vehicles and two wheelers.

The protest started with Sivayan toll plaza in Meerut and spread to Dasna, Shahjahanpur, Gorakhpur, Firozabad, Moradabad, Yamuna Expressway, and DND toll plazas. ‘The toll plazas are built on land acquired from farmers. They should not be made to pay toll,’ contended Tikait.

The other demands of farmers included Rs 400 per quintal rate for sugar-cane, waiving of all cases against farmers, immediate disbursal of compensation of acquired land and others.
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