Farmers associations supported by opposition parties, including the RJD, Saturday held an hour-long ‘chakka jam‘ (road blockade) in Bihar in response to the nation-wide agitation called by the farmers unions against the Centre’s farm laws.
The agitation was held for an hour from 2 to 3 pm in the state and passed of peacefully with stray incidents of blockade on the national and state highways reported from some districts. Congress, the Left parties, besides RJD extended their support to the ‘chakka jam’.
Bihar Rajya Kisan Sabha, an umbrella body of farmer associations in the state and political parties, had declared that it would hold ‘chakka jam’ for an hour so as not to inconvenience students appearing for the intermediate examination which is currently underway in the state.
The state capital, Gaya and several other towns and cities of Bihar did not report any disruption in the movement of traffic due to the agitation but there were reports from districts where road blockades hampered normal life for some time.
National and state highways were blocked for a brief period in different districts, including Muzaffarpur, Samastipur, Darbhanga and Bhagalpur.
In Muzaffarpur RJD district president Ramesh Gupta and his supporters blocked Muzaffarpur-Motihari national highway for several hours. They also disrupted traffic in Company Bagh area in the town to press their demand to repeal the “black” farm laws.
Grand Alliance leaders blocked Samastipur-Patna road for some time and took out a protest march in the town and raised anti-central government slogans. They blocked NH 28 for three hours throwing normal life traffic out of gear.
The impact of the ‘chakka jam’ was also felt in Darbhanga where protesters blocked Darbhanga-Muzaffarpur NH57 at several places.
CPI-ML (Liberation) leader Baidyanath Yadav claimed that the farmers unions and opposition political parties will force the government to repeal the farm laws, which he said had been enacted in the interest of the corporates.
In Bhagalpur a handful of Grand Alliance leaders shouted slogans at Khalifabagh and Kutchery chowks and blocked the road for around 30 minutes.
Besides protesting against the Centre’s three farm laws, the countrywide three-hour-long agitation programme was announced also to register protest against the internet ban in areas near the farmers’ agitation sites, alleged harassment by the authorities and other issues. The opposition parties had on January 30, 2021 formed human chains across Bihar in solidarity with the farmers.