BJP ally Rashtriya Loktantrik Party (RLP), led by Hanuman Beniwal, on Saturday decided to quit the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) amid a longstanding row over the contentious farm laws passed by the central government.
Party chief and Nagaur MP Beniwal announced the split from NDA on this day, saying that he is "not stuck to the alliance with Fevicol".
"I have left the NDA (National Democratic Alliance) in protest against the three farm laws. These laws are anti-farmer. I have left NDA but won't forge alliance with Congress," news agency ANI quoted RLP chief Beniwal as saying.
Earlier this day, minutes before starting of with thousands of farmers for Delhi, Beniwal made it clear that this was the moment of clarity.
He had said that the BJP will have to choose and it has to be fast, now that the farmers' crisis have stretched beyond a month. Looking at the rapid developments, it seems like all the difficult decisions were made from both party quarters.
Thousands and thousands of farmers were all gathered at Kotputli near Jaipur ready for "Delhi Chalo" on Saturday.
"Around 2 lakh farmers are marching with me to Delhi and we shall take on spot decision on our alliance with NDA. If farm bills are not withdrawn, we will announce the severing of our ties with NDA," Beniwal had told news agency IANS earlier this day.
A statement issued by the RLP on Friday said that people and farmers from different districts of Rajasthan would gather in Kotputli and would travel towards Shahjahanpur border under the leadership of MP Hanuman Beniwal.
Beniwal then said, "Annadata (farmers) of our country are on streets and hence PM Narendra Modi should show a big heart and withdraw the three farm laws."
Beniwal had earlier written to Union Minister Amit Shah threatening he would reconsider his alliance with the BJP if the farm laws were not withdrawn.
There were theories being floated that Beniwal might announce to break his alliance with the BJP if the farm crisis does not get resolved. With him finally announcing the split, the rumours have been confirmed.
On Friday, the Jaipur-Delhi highway was fully blocked in the wake of farmers protesting at Shahjahanpur which is located on the Rajasthan-Haryana border.
In the wake of rising number of protesters, the Haryana police had blocked the second lane of the highway blocking Delhi-Jaipur highway too. Earlier, the farmers from Rajasthan had blocked one lane of the Jaipur-Delhi highway.
Meanwhile, several rounds of talks between ministers and farmers' leaders have failed to produce a breakthrough so far.
Hundreds of farmers have been protesting against the Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.
(With inputs from agencies)