5 die in farmers’ protests, concerns raised about lack of medical facilities on site


Chandigarh: The farmers’ agitation against the three farm laws have been hit adversely by the cold weather, causing the death of five farmers from Punjab and raising concerns about the lack of medical facilities at the protest sites.

The deceased farmers include Dhanna Singh (45) and Gurjant Singh (60) from Mansa, Janak Raj Agarwal (55) from Dhanula, Gajjan Singh (55) from Ludhiana and Lakhbir Singh (57) from Tanvandi Sabo. Family members of the five farmers are demanding compensation and jobs from the government. Some family members also refused to take the bodies back and protested outside PGIMS, Rohtak .

It has been reported that a lot of farmers sitting on protest at the Delhi borders are suffering from chronic diseases which require proper treatment and timely medication. Protestors are especially worried about farmers with heart disease as three of the deceased suffered heart attacks.

Sandeep Sangroha (45), a farmer from Karnal, said that the medical arrangements made by the local administration are insufficient, and people suffering from illnesses and even the cold have been deprived of medicines. 

Ravinder Kajal, another farmer at the protest, said that although a few medical camps have been set up and trainee medical students are continuing to serve patients, more arrangements and facilities are required.

The lack of medical facilities is currently forcing the farmers to visit the adjoining areas of Sonipat, Jhajjar and Rohtak for treatment and medicines. Regarding the issue, INLD leader, Abhay Chautala, said on Friday that the party and its workers will send a medical team of 150 members to take care of needy patients. 

State president of the BKU student wing (Haryana), Manoj Kumar, also said that the farmers lack basic facilities at the site, including sanitation, medical treatment and accommodation. They are being forced to sleep either in makeshift tents or under trolleys, he reported. 

Besides health issues, concerns are also being raised about participants in the protest who are small-scale farmers and have debts to pay.