New Delhi: A 65-year-old farmer allegedly attempted suicide by consuming poison at Singhu border Monday afternoon amid the ongoing protests against the Centre’s three contentious farm laws.
The farmer, identified as Niranjan Singh from Punjab’s Tarn Taran district, is now admitted in PGIMS, Rohtak, and his condition is stable.
“We were sitting on the stage at Singhu border when suddenly we heard that Niranjan had consumed poisonous pills. We first took him to Civil Hospital, Sonipat, from where he was referred to PGIMS, Rohtak,” said Mukhtiar Singh, Niranjan’s acquaintance, who took him to the hospital.
“He had just arrived last night from Tarn Taran to protest at the Singhu border,” said Mukhtiar. “But when he got here, he was pained by the sight of farmers protesting in the biting cold, while the government remained inconsiderate to our demands,” he added.
Doctors at PGIMS said that while Singh’s condition was critical when he was brought at around 4 pm, he is now stable.
“Since he had consumed poison, his condition was not good at all when he arrived. But he has responded to treatment well and is now stable,” said Dr Gajendra Singh, Public Information Officer, PGIMS, Rohtak.
The incident comes a day after a 22-year-old farmer allegedly killed himself after returning from a protest at the Singhu border. On 16 December, a Sikh preacher, Sant Baba Ram Singh, who was pained by the protesting farmers’ plight, is believed to have committed suicide by shooting himself at the Singhu border.
Farmer leaders call for courage, solidarity
Earlier Monday, farmer leaders leading the protests released a statement, decrying suicides reported from the site in the last few days.
“The way the courage of the Punjab’s farmers is being discussed across the country, any act of suicide gives a wrong message. Instead of taking such drastic steps, show solidarity and join the farmers’ struggle, it will ensure our victory,” said the statement released by Buta Singh (president) and Jagmohan Singh Patiala (general secretary) of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Dakonda), one of the 32 farmer unions organising the protests.
For over three weeks, thousands of farmers have been protesting at Delhi’s borders against the three farm laws passed in Parliament in September. Over 20 farmers have died so far, either at Delhi’s borders or in road accidents on the way to Delhi.