'Rail Roko' affects 150 locations in Northern Railway zone, hinders running of 60 trains

Farmers block train traffic in Punjab, Haryana as part of 'rail roko' stir over Lakhimpur incident
Members of various farmers organizations black railway tracks during a protest against central government, in Patiala, Monday, Oct.18, 2021. PTI

New Delhi/Jaipur: The Samyukt Kisan Morcha's six-hour 'rail roko' protest on Monday over the Lakhimpur violence affected 150 locations in the Northern Railway zone and hindered the running of 60 trains, said its chief public relation officer (CPRO).

In the North Western Railway (NWR) zone, rail traffic was affected in some sections in Rajasthan and Haryana with 18 trains cancelled, 10 partially cancelled and one diverted due to the protest.

The trains that have been affected in the Northern Railway zone include the Chandigarh-Ferozepur Express. Its scheduled departure from Ludhiana was 7 am, but has been stranded there due to a blockade in the Ferozpur-Ludhiana section, the official said.

The New Delhi-Amritsar Shatabdi Express was halted near Shambu station as protesters blocked railway tracks near Sahnewal and Rajpura.

"So far, 150 locations in the Northern Railway zone have been affected and operations of 60 trains hindered. About 25 passenger and short distance trains have been cancelled," the Northern Railway CPRO said.

In Rajasthan, farmers held a protest on the tracks in Hanumangarh district and at the entrance of Jaipur Junction station and raised slogans against the Central and the Uttar Pradesh governments.

An NWR spokesperson said rail traffic on Bhiwani-Rewari, Sirsa-Rewari, Loharu-Hisar, Suratgarh-Bathinda, Sirsa-Bathinda, Hanumangarh-Bathinda, Rohtak-Bhiwani, Rewari-Sadulpur, Hisar-Bathinda, Hanumangarh-Sadulpur and Sri Ganganagar-Rewari sections was affected.

Eighteen trains, including the Firozpur-Hanumangarh Special train, Ludhiana-Hisar Special train, Bathinda-Sriganganagar Special train, Bathinda-Lalgarh Special train, Phulera-Rewari Special train, Rewari-Jodhpur Special train, Ratangarh-Churu special train and Churu-Bikaner special train, were cancelled on Monday, he said.

Ten trains have been partially cancelled due to the stir.

The route of Ahmedabad-Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Katra Special train has also been changed, the NWR spokesperson said, adding the train which departed from Ahmedabad on Saturday will run via Rewari-Delhi-Pathankot to Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Katra.

The Samyukt Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body of farmer unions spearheading the agitation against the Centre's three agri laws, had said "protests will be intensified until justice is secured" in the Lakhimpur Kheri case.

All train traffic will be stopped from 10 am till 4 pm on Monday during the 'rail roko' protest over the demand of the dismissal and arrest of Union Minister Ajay Mishra in connection with the Lakhimpur Kheri case, the SKM had said.

Four of the eight people who died in the violence in Uttar Pradesh's Lakhimpur Kheri on October 3 were farmers, allegedly knocked down by a vehicle carrying BJP workers. Angry farmers then allegedly lynched some people in the vehicles.

The other dead included two BJP workers and their driver.

Farmers have claimed that Ashish Mishra was in one of the vehicles, an allegation denied by him and Ajay Mishra who say they can produce evidence to prove he was at an event at that time. Ashish Mishra was arrested in the case on October 9.

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