Chandigarh: Different farmers' organisations in Punjab, protesting the three Central farm laws, on Saturday announced to lift their rail blockade for passenger trains from November 23.
The decision to allow passenger trains in the state came after a meeting of representatives of farmer leaders with Chief Minister Amarinder Singh who had invited them for talks here.
"Punjab farmers to completely lift their rail blockade from Monday (November 23) to allow all goods and passenger trains, in response to impassioned appeal by the chief minister at a meeting with Kisan Unions," tweeted Raveen Thukral, media advisor to the Punjab chief minister.
Before meeting the chief minister, farmers' organisations held their own meeting to deliberate the rail blockade issue.
The farmers' organisation, that had resorted to 'rail roko' agitation from September 24 over the farm laws, had already agreed to allow goods trains to run in the state, besides clearing rail tracks and vacating platforms. But the deadlock between the protesting farmers and the Railways continued over resumption of trains.
The farmers' bodies had maintained that they would consider allowing passenger trains to run in the state if the Centre starts running goods trains first. However, the Railways had refused to resume goods trains, saying it would either operate both freight and passenger trains or none.
The Railways has maintained that it needs full guarantee from the state government that no trains will be disrupted and both passenger and freight trains would be allowed to operate.
The farmers' bodies were also under pressure from the industries which have seen a loss of about Rs 30,000 crore because of suspension of goods trains in the state.
Halting of goods trains has also hit the supplies of fertilizers for the agriculture sector, coal for thermal power plants and supply of gunny bags for paddy procurement.
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New Delhi, May 13: The dialer tune message of the Centre asking people to get vaccinated was criticised by the Delhi High Court which on Thursday said the "irritating" message was being played for "we don't know how long" asking people to get the jab when there was not enough vaccine.
"You have been playing that one irritating message on the phone whenever one makes a call, for we do not know how long, that you (people) should have the vaccination, when you (Centre) don't have enough vaccine.
"You are not vaccinating people, but you still say that vaccination lagavaiye (get vaccinated). Kaun lagayega vaccination (who will get vaccinated), when there is no vaccination. What is the point of the message," a bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rekha Palli said.
"You should give it to everyone. Even if you are going to take money, give it. That is what even children are saying," the bench said and added that the government needs to be "innovative" in such things.
The court said that the government should prepare more such messages instead of preparing just one and running it always.
"Till like a tape it stops running or starts skipping, you will run it for 10 years," it said.
The bench said the government, state or Centre, have to react to the situation on the ground.
"So please have more of them (dialer messages). When a person hears a different one every time, maybe it will help him/her," the court said.
It also suggested using TV anchors or producers to create programmes, on making people aware about use of oxygen concentrators and cylinders or on vaccination, of short durations which can be aired on all channels.
It also said that celebs like Amitabh Bachchan can be asked to chip in and that all this "needs to be done soon".
The court said that a lot of "publicity and propaganda" was there last year on washing of hands regularly and wearing of masks and now there should be similar audio-visual initiatives on use of oxygen, concentrators, medications, etc.
"We are losing time. There should be a sense of urgency," the bench said and directed the Centre and Delhi government to file their reports by May 18 on what steps they are going to take for disseminating information on COVID management via print and TV media and also dialer tunes.