Farmer unions, protesting over the Centre’s three contentious farm laws, held a four-hour nationwide ‘rail roko’ agitation with the Railways saying there was negligible impact on services.
A Railways spokesperson was quoted by PTI as saying there was negligible or minimal impact on railway services due to the rail roko’ agitation called by farmer groups on Thursday.
He said the majority of the zonal railways reported no incident due to the protest.
“The rail roko agitation passed off without any untoward incident. There was negligible or minimal impact on running of the trains across the country. Train movement in all the zones is normal now,” the spokesperson said.
“Majority of the zones have reported not a single case of any stoppage of train by the agitators. Few trains were stopped in some areas of some Railway zones but now train operation is normal and trains are being operated smoothly. While dealing with the rail roko agitation, utmost patience was exercised by all concerned,” he was quoted as saying.
Earlier, around 25 trains were regulated by the Railways on account of the agitation.
The Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM), an umbrella body of farmer unions which is spearheading the protest, last week had announced the rail blockade to press for its demand to repeal three new farm legislation.
The SKM had said the blockade will be held across the country from 12 pm to 4 pm.
The railways has deployed 20 additional companies of the RPSF across the country, especially in Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal.
In Punjab and Haryana, farmers at several places squatted on railway tracks which led to disruption in the normal movement of trains on some routes.
Farmer groups’ congregations at Haryana’s Ambala, Kurukshetra and Charkhi Dadri railway stations were reported, according to officials.
At Modinagar railway station in Ghaziabad district of Uttar Pradesh, farmers squatted on tracks, but they had very limited effect on train services, said officials.
At Kurukshetra in Haryana, farmers climbed on the locomotive of Gita Jayanti Express train which was stationary at that time, resulting in some delay.
In Punjab, protesters sat on tracks at many places on the Delhi-Ludhiana-Amritsar railway route, officials said.
Farmers also blocked the Jalandhar Cantt-Jammu railway track in Jalandhar and also blocked a rail track in Mohali district, they said.
Security had been tightened in both Haryana and Punjab, with personnel of the government railway police and the state police force being deployed there, officials said.
The Ferozepur division of the Northern Railways decided to halt trains at stations so that passengers face less inconvenience during the ‘rail roko’ protest.
In Rajasthan, officials said the Rewari-Sri Ganganagar special train was the only train cancelled due to the agitation, while few others were delayed.
In West Bengal too, stray incidents were reported across the state with little or no effect on rail services.
Within an hour of the agitation being over, the Railways said all its services were running normally across the country.
(With inputs from PTI)