Tractor rally violence

New Delhi, Jan 27: Two pleas were filed in the Supreme Court on Wednesday over the tractor rally violence on the Republic Day with one seeking setting up of a commission, headed by a retired apex court judge, to inquire into the incident while the other urged it to direct the media not to declare farmers as “terrorist” without any evidence.

The tractor parade on Tuesday that was to highlight the demands of farmer unions to repeal three new agri laws dissolved into anarchy on the streets of the National Capital as thousands of protesters broke through barriers, fought with the police, overturned vehicles and hoisted a religious flag from the ramparts of the iconic Red Fort.

Petitioner-advocate Vishal Tiwari, besides seeking setting up of an inquiry commission, has sought direction to concerned authority to lodge FIRs against individuals or organisations responsible for the violence and causing dishonour of the National Flag on January 26.

Tiwari has said that a three-member inquiry commission under the chairmanship of a former top court judge and comprising two retired high court judges should be set up for collecting and recording evidence and submit a report to the apex court in a time-bound manner.

It said that farmers’ protest against the three new agri laws is going on for over two months but it took a “violent turn” during the tractor parade.

The other plea, filed by advocate ML Sharma, has claimed that there was a “planned conspiracy” to sabotage the protest by farmers and they were allegedly declared as “terrorist” without any evidence.

Sharma sought directions to the Centre and the media to prohibit propagation of “false allegations and actions declaring farmers as terrorist” without any evidence.

Tiwari’s plea further said: “Unfortunately, the tractor march took a violent turn leaving injuries and destruction of public property. This incident also effected the daily life of the public. The Internet services were interrupted as government ordered the operators to suspend the same. In the present time, the Internet services are very essential to carry out the work in different professions especially in advocacy as the courts and our Supreme Court of India is functioning online.”

Clash between the farmers and police on the Republic Day has caught the attention of the entire world, it said.

“The matter is serious because when the protest was going on peacefully for last two months then suddenly, how it turned into violent movement and led violence on January 26. The question for consideration in national security and public interest arises that who is responsible for creating the disturbance and how and who turned the peaceful farmer protest into violent movement or how and who created the circumstances which let the protest turn violent,” the plea filed by Tiwari said. – PTI