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Farmers at Delhi-Haryana border won’t get Covid tested, say vaccine shouldn’t be a compulsion

Agitating farmer union leaders say those at the protest site are free to decide if they want to be tested for Covid or receive the vaccine, agree to 'passively' support govt efforts.

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Chandigarh: The agitating farmers sitting at the Singhu border Thursday refused to get a compulsory Covid-19 test done while “allowing” the Haryana government to accelerate its vaccination drive at the protest site. 

After a meeting between leaders of the farmer unions and the Haryana government, which included health and district administration officials, senior farmer leader Dr Darshan Pal told media that if any farmer is feeling feverish or has any other symptoms, the farmer will decide whether he has to get himself tested or not for Covid-19.

“There should be no compulsion about this,” Pal said.

“Similarly, there should be no compulsion regarding vaccination. Farmers who want to be vaccinated are free to approach the centres opened by the government near the site or anywhere they want and get themselves vaccinated,” he added. “However, the government is free to put up banners and approach farmers, to which we have no objection.”

The meeting with government officials was held in Sonipat Thursday evening.

Haryana Health Minister Anil Vij had Monday announced that his government will test the agitating farmers for Covid and also get them vaccinated. 

“The farmers outrightly refused any move to test them for Covid,” J.S. Randhawa, Senior Superintendent of Police Sonipat, told ThePrint after the meeting. “We will continue the process of trying to convince them and hold another meeting with them very soon,” he added.

Randhawa said the farmer leaders had agreed to at least passively promote vaccination among the farmers. 

“Already 1,100 farmers had been vaccinated through two centres that had been put up near the protest site,” he added. “In the coming days, we will increase the vaccination through mobile vaccination units.”

Also read: This Haryana district has 1 govt Covid lab, & people doubt its ‘credibility’, complain of delays

Farmers won’t block emergency vehicles, oxygen transport

SSP Randhawa said a discussion regarding the movement of traffic at the site of agitation also took place during the meeting. 

“We told the farmers that because of their sitting at the border, several vehicles had to take a longer turn to enter Delhi. They have assured us today that they will allow all emergency vehicles through the site,” he added. “Until now, we have had no complaints from anyone regarding the stoppage of any vehicle by the farmers at the site.”

The farmer union leaders also made it clear that no vehicle carrying oxygen to or from Delhi had been stopped by them at any stage. 

“A BJP minister had recently commented that we were stopping oxygen tankers but this is false. No vehicle including oxygen tankers or ambulance has ever been stopped by the farmers,” Dr Darshan Pal said. “We have made it clear several times that we have not blocked or barricaded any road. It is the Delhi Police that has done it.”

(Edited by Arun Prashanth)

Also read: Delhi hospitals gasp as Haryana refuses to share oxygen, then Centre steps in to resolve row


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  1. Ring fence them at the venue.. If they refuse to get tested or vaccinated they must stay right there at the venue till they change their minds.. Get tested and vaccinated if u want to leave, simple.. Personal choice must come with reasonable limitations..

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