‘Violence is never ever the answer’: Sportstars appeal for calm amid farmers protest in New Delhi

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Tens of thousands of protesting farmers drove long lines of tractors into India’s capital on Tuesday, breaking through police barricades, defying tear gas and storming the historic Red Fort as the nation celebrated Republic Day.

They waved farm union flags from the ramparts of the fort, where prime ministers annually hoist the national flag to mark the country’s independence.

Farmers’ tractor rally Live Updates

Thousands more farmers marched on foot or rode on horseback while shouting slogans against Prime Minister Narendra Modi. At some places, they were showered with flower petals by residents who recorded the unprecedented rally on their phones.

Leaders of the farmers said more than 10,000 tractors joined the protest.

Riot police fired tear gas and water cannons at numerous places to push back the rows upon rows of tractors, which shoved aside concrete and steel barricades. Authorities blocked roads with large trucks and buses in an attempt to stop the farmers from reaching the center of the capital.

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The tractor rally overshadowed the Republic Day celebrations, which were scaled back because of the coronavirus pandemic.



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