New Delhi/Chandigarh: Taking an U-turn on his statement before the media last night, a masked man who was caught at the Singhu border protest site by farmers alleging he was there to shoot farmer leaders, has now said he was reading a script prepared by the farmers.Also Read - Did This 2020 Video Predict Events of PM Modi's Security Breach in Punjab? | Watch
In a new viral video that has surfaced following his arrest by Sonepat Police on Friday, the man who earlier appeared before the media wearing a mask, has said that he was reading a script given to him by the farmers. Also Read - PM Modi Releases Rs 20,000 Crore To 10 Crore Farmers Under 10th Instalment Of PM-KISAN Scheme
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This video hasn’t been validated by police, who say they will give more information later after questioning the man in custody.
A police official said the man, stated to be around 21 years of age, was being quizzed in Sonipat by the Crime Branch of the state police.
He said the man was residing in Sonipat and had no previous criminal record.
“He was not carrying any arms or ammunition. We are questioning him, but nothing has so far been found that points to any kind of conspiracy, as is being alleged,” the official said, adding that further investigations are underway.
At the Singhu border press conference late on Friday night, the farmer leaders presented the man who claimed that his accomplices were asked to pose as policemen and baton-charge the crowd during the proposed tractor parade in the national capital on Republic Day.
The farmer leaders claimed that they caught the man from the protest site at the Singhu border. He was subsequently handed over to the Haryana police.
Farmer leader Kulwant Singh Sandhu alleged that attempts are being made to disrupt the ongoing agitation against three farm laws.
The man, who had his face covered with a scarf, claimed at the press conference that a plan was hatched to shoot four farmer leaders, who are known faces in the media, at the stage on Saturday.
“On January 26, there was a plan to create disturbance during the tractor parade by opening fire on Delhi Police personnel, which would prompt them to retaliate against the protesting farmers in a strong manner,” he said.
Thousands of farmers, mostly from Punjab, Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh, have been camping at several border points of Delhi since November 28 last year, demanding a repeal of the three farm laws and a legal guarantee to the minimum support price (MSP) for their crops.
Enacted in September last year, the three laws have been projected by the Centre as major reforms in the agriculture sector that will remove middlemen and allow farmers to sell their produce anywhere in the country.
However, the protesting farmers have expressed their apprehension that the new laws would pave the way for eliminating the safety cushion of MSP and do away with the “mandi” (wholesale market) system, leaving them at the mercy of big corporates.