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Yogendra Yadav & Medha Patkar arrested along with other leaders of AIKSCC by MP police
On Thursday, Yogendra Yadav along with all the top leaders of All India Kisan Sangarsh Committee including leaders VM Singh, Avik Saha, Raju Shetty and Medha Patkar were arrested by the Madhya Pradesh police.

Hundreds of farmers were also arrested along with them. The activists have claimed that the arrests were made to prevent them from paying homage to farmers killed in police firing last month in Mandsaur, Madhya Pradesh.

The other activists who were arrested included VM Singh, Raju Shetty, Rampal Jat, Hannan Molla, Dr Sunilam, Kiran Wissa, Avik Saha, Kalpana Parulkar, Pratibha Shinde, Sunil Vimalanathan, Paras Sakalecha, and Lingaraj.

AIKSCC which claims to be a conglomerate of more than 130 organisations has started its Kisan Mukti Yatra from Madhya Pradesh. The yatra will cover six states before it reaches Delhi on July 18th.

The organisation has termed it as "a brutal attack on freedom of expression and the right to dissent," and has claimed that the arrests were "done because perhaps the MP government had realised the strength of AIKSCC's farmers' movement".

In a statement issued by AIKSCC said: "In a brazen violation of democratic rights, more than 500 farmers, activists and leaders of farmers' organisations were arrested near Pipliya Mandi (Budha Village) by the Madhya Pradesh police today. The arrested leaders include VM Singh, Raju Shetty, Rampal Jat, Hannan Molla, Medha Patkar, Dr Sunilam, Lingaraj, Kiran Wissa, Avik Saha, Kalpana Parulkar, Pratibha Shinde, Sunil Vimalanathan, Paras Sakalecha, and Yogendra Yadav. The leaders were arrested when they were on their way to Pipliya Mandi along with thousands of farmers to pay respects to the six farmers martyred in police firing last month in Mandsaur and were taken to Dhalal Mandi, 15 kms from Mandsaur."

Farmer leader Raju Shetty, one of the arrested leaders said, "We farmers provide food to the government and in return we get bullets, there can be nothing worse than this."

Medha Patekar lashed out at the Madhya Pradesh government and said, "The Central government which won the elections in the name of farmers, has proven to be the biggest anti-farmer government in the history of this country."

The organisation also claimed that the MP government was undemocratically stopping it from even organising the protest. "In an attempt to prevent AIKSCC from holding the yatra, the main organiser of Madhya Pradesh leg of the yatra, Dr Sunilam, was arrested by the Madhya Pradesh police last night hours before the yatra was to begin," the statement by AIKSCC said.

In a short conversation that could be held with him before he was arrested, Yogendra Yadav said, "We are not going to give any kind of bond or file for any bail. Let the police arrest us, we will continue our protest in jail till the demands of farmers are not accepted."

Yogendra Yadav also informed the press that tomorrow the yatra is going to begin from Richalal Muha and a press conference will be held in Ujjain and from there, the yatra will proceed to Indore.

As per latest reports, all those who had been arrested were later released by the police.

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