A second car rally in support of farmers in India has made its way to Vancouver.
Organizers tell Daily Hive over 3,000 vehicles joined in on today’s demonstrations.
This is the second major rally in Vancouver to take place in support of the farmers’ demonstrations in India.
The farmers — many hailing from the northern Punjab and Haryana states — are marching thousands of kilometres to New Delhi, protesting three government agriculture laws passed in mid-September by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government.
The rally began at the Cloverdale Recreation Centre. The convoy then drove to Vancouver with many demonstrators arriving at the Indian Consulate.
“Please stay in your vehicles at all times. If you have to get out please wear a face covering and follow social distancing guidelines. Stay healthy,” states the event page.
This comes after a large car rally took place on December 2 from Surrey to the Indian Consulate in downtown Vancouver.
“Many of us are farmers here in BC”
Rally organizers explain the farmers’ concerns are tied to the fact the reforms will “lead to the end of the wholesale markets and set minimal fair prices.”
“We have organized a Kisaan (farm) support car rally in solidarity and support with the farmers. We are the immigrants and children of immigrants with deep ties to farming back home in India. Many of us are farmers here in BC,” note organizers in a release. “We are truly connected and our roots have deep ties to the soil and earth of India.”
Rami Hayre attended the demonstrations today. She tells Daily Hive that it is “important for us to show the world that an issue in another country does not mean that it is irrelevant to our livelihood.”
She adds that for most demonstrators, the cause hits close to home for their families.
“For many of us protesting, our families were born and raised in India on farms, some still have families there. Leaving back that life in order to give us a more privileged one in Canada,” she said.
“With that privilege, we have a voice and a duty to advocate for other countries, and democracies when we see that basic human rights are not being upheld. We care about the people. We came from them.”
In a statement on Friday, Surrey RCMP also reminded “all participants that BC Provincial Health Orders are currently in effect which have placed restrictions and prohibitions on events and gatherings.”
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RCMP is asking participants to stay in their vehicles and not congregate or intermingle with others.
“If you have to step out of your vehicle, please wear a mask and maintain social distancing.”
Daily Hive has reached out to VPD for comment.