The Delhi Police had registered as many as 39 cases, in the span of September to December 2020, against farmers protesting the three contentious agri laws at the borders of the national capital, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) informed today.
"As far as the NCT [National Capital Territory] of Delhi is concerned, Delhi Police has informed that 39 cases have been registered against the farmers protesting the new farm laws, between September to December 2020, at Delhi borders," news agency ANI cited the MHA statement.
Additionally, one suicide case had been reported to the Delhi Police during the farmers' protests at the border areas, the MHA stated.
At the same time, the MHA pointed out that according to the police, at the Delhi border, large convoys of protesting farmers in tractor trolleys had tried to furiously force their way and go past the police barricades in an attempt to enter Delhi to mark their protests against the recently-enacted farm laws.
"They aggressively resorted to rioting, damage to government property and used criminal force to deter public servants from the discharge of their duty, thereby inflicting injuries to the on-duty police personnel," the MHA stated.
The Home Ministry also noted that 'police' and 'public order' are State subjects as per the seventh schedule of the Indian Constitution.
"Responsibilities of maintaining law and order, including investigation, registration/prosecution of crimes, and protection of life rests primarily with the state government," the ministry stated.
Regarding the central government's role in preventing situations that might potentially escalate, the MHA stated that the Centre keeps a "constant watch" on activities of individuals and organisations having a bearing on national security and public order through its security and law enforcement agencies.
"Requisite action is taken as per law, whenever necessary," the MHA stated.
Notably, farmers have been protesting on the different borders of the national capital since November 26 last year against the three newly enacted farm laws - 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.