NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Thursday warned that the ongoing protests by thousands of farmers against Centre’s three contentious farm laws in the national capital could lead to further escalation of coronavirus cases in Delhi and NCR.

While seeking a reply from the Centre over farmers protest, the Chief Justice of India SA Bobade asked, “The protest by farmers can lead to further spreading of coronavirus cases if it does not end soon.”

The CJI said, ”we are worried about the situation, especially in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic in the national capital and elsewhere.”

The CJI made these remarks while hearing a case linked to the CBI probe in the Nizamuddin Markaz case.

The petitioner in the Markaz case had raised fingers over the shoddy probe and the failure of the authorities to trace Tablighi Jamaat chief Maulana Saad.

The Supreme Court had sought a reply from the government as to what precautionary measures it has taken to prevent the rise of coronavirus cases in view of the farmers’ protest.

The Supreme Court had earlier said that it will hear all the petitions challenging the constitutionality of the three farm acts on January 8 (Monday). 

The Centre has told the court that the talks with farmers have been positive and that there are “chances of some sort of understanding between the two parties”. 

The deadlock over the repeal of the contentious farm laws continued, with the Centre and the farmers unable to get on the same page in the seventh round of discussions.

The protesting farmers have announced that they will intensify their agitation against the three contentious agriculture laws for the next two weeks. 

Farmer union leaders on Thursday took out a tractor march at four Delhi borders on January 7 to press for their demands — repealing the laws and giving legal guarantee for the Minimum Support Price (MSP) system. 

The leaders called the march a “trailer” before the massive Republic Day agitation.

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