More than 1,000 cars were convoying around the Perimeter Highway on Sunday in support of farmers in India.
The cars were driving out to show support after three agricultural laws were passed in September, allowing farmers to sell their crops directly to private buyers instead of to the Indian government at a regulated price.
The Indian government has argued the change gives farmers more freedoms, but farmers fear that corporations would be able to exploit them since they argue the new legislation has no safeguards in place to protect them.
Mandeep Brar was one of the rally organizers and said he was blown away by the amount of support.
“This was a protest to help support the farmers all over the world and in India. The Indian government passed laws that aren’t in the favour of farmers,” he said.
“We are just getting together here to support them. I’m a son of a farmer, so we are here to support them.”
Brar said he expected people to come out to support the cause, but didn’t expect the wave of cars to come flooding in.
“We thought 1,000 cars, but we saw thousands of cars,” he said. “We would like to say congratulations to those participating today, but everyone understands the COVID-19 laws and they respected that.”
Brar said everyone was cautious about the public health protocols.
“No one got out from their cars and moreover everyone (who) was in their cars was in their own family. That’s good people listened to us,” he said.
“So many people in Winnipeg have connections with their land and they don’t want these laws to be implemented in India. We are supporting them by doing this car rally so they know everyone is supporting them.”
Rallies have also been held in support of Indian farmers across Canada, such as in Halifax, Toronto and B.C.