New Delhi , January 26: The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Tuesday condemned the violence during the farmers' protest in the national capital on Republic Day and also slammed the central government saying it is regrettable that the central government allowed the situation to deteriorate to such an extent.
In a statement, the party said that farmers leaders have stated that those who indulged in violence were "external elements" but "violence has weakened the movement which was going on peacefully. "We strongly condemn the violence seen in today's protest. It is regrettable that the Central government allowed the situation to deteriorate to such an extent. The movement has been peaceful for the last two months. Farmer leaders have said that those who indulged in violence today were not part of the movement and were external elements. Whoever they were, the violence has certainly weakened the movement which was going on so peacefully and in a disciplined manner," the statement said.
Protestors had reached ITO in central Delhi after breaking police barricades placed opposite old Delhi Police headquarters and were seen vandalising vehicles. Police used tear gas shells to disperse the protestors. Several people including police personnel suffered injuries during the clash.
Protesters also entered the Red Fort premises in the national capital and waved flags they were carrying from its ramparts. A protestor also went up the mast on the ramparts of the historic 17th-century monument and raised 'Nishan Sahib'flag he was carrying at the place where the Tricolour is hoisted.
The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) closed the entry and exit gates of several stations in view of the situation created by protestors. Internet services in some areas of the national capital was temporarily suspended.
The protestors who entered Delhi did not follow the marked route for their tractor march on Republic Day and forcibly entered central Delhi by removing police barricades.
Samyukta Kisan Morcha, the conglomerate of farmer unions, said it condemns and regrets the violence that took place in the national capital during the farmers' protest today.
"Anti-social elements had infiltrated the otherwise peaceful movement. We have always held that peace is our biggest strength and that any violation would hurt the movement," it said.
Farmers have been protesting on the different borders of the national capital since November 26 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.