New Delhi: A 49-year-old farmer from Haryana’s Hisar district was found dead around seven kilometres from the Tikri border protest site. Thousands of farmers have been protesting against the Centre’s new farm laws at Delhi’s borders for over 100 days now.
Police suspect that the farmer, named Rajbir, died by suicide. He left a note, PTI quoted Bahadurgarh City police station station house officer Vijay Kumar as having said.
Police also said he was a supporter of the farmers’ agitation and had hanged himself.
Talks between farmers protesting against the laws and the Centre have stalled since January 26, when a tractor rally by farmers along pre-approved routes faced police barricades and turned violent after a section flouted the original routes.
In the note assumed to have been left behind by Rajbir, he says that the three farm laws were responsible for him having to die by suicide. “He also said that the Centre should fulfil his last wish by repealing the legislations,” police told PTI.
This is not the first death by suicide among farmers protesting against the laws.
Last month, a farmer from Jind in Haryana died by suicide two kilometres from the Tikri protest site.
Earlier, another Haryana farmer had allegedly consumed poison at the Tikri border and died at a Delhi hospital later.
In December last year, a lawyer from Punjab reportedly died by suicide a few kilometres away from Tikri.
Sikh preacher Sant Ram Singh had also ended his life near the Singhu border protest site, noting that he was “unable to bear the pain of the farmers”.
A 39-year-old farmer also died by suicide at the Singhu site in January.
In February, the Centre told the Lok Sabha that one suicide had been reported by Delhi Police during the Delhi border protests. However, the umbrella body of the Sanyukt Kisan Morcha said as many as 10 had died by suicide at the borders of Tikri, Ghazipur and Singhu.
(With PTI inputs)
If you know someone – friend or family member – at risk of suicide, please reach out to them. The Suicide Prevention India Foundation maintains a list of telephone numbers (www.spif.in/seek-help/) they can call to speak in confidence. You could also refer them to the nearest hospital.