Breaking point: Farmers movement likely to grow as talks make no progress


New Delhi, Jan 16 (ANI): Farmers shout slogans During a protest against the newly passed farm law, at Singhu Border in New Delhi on Saturday. (ANI Photo)

Unions says farmers would withdraw the Republic Day tractor parade if the Supreme Court orders 

Our Bureau
New Delhi  

As the ninth round of talks between farmers and the Central government over farm laws remained inconclusive on Friday, national spokesperson of Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU) Rakesh Tikait said the farmers will not go to the Committee constituted by the Supreme Court, they will talk to Centre only.

“Our demands of repealing of the three farm laws and MSP (minimum support price) guarantee remain. We will not go to the Committee constituted by the Supreme Court. We’ll talk to Central government only,” said Tikait after the meeting ended. The Supreme Court had on Tuesday stayed the implementation of three farm laws until further orders and formed a four-member committee.

Harpal Singh Sangha, Azad Kissan Committee, told reporters, “Not even a single issue was resolved in today’s talk as well. The Centre said it will talk about MSP later on.”

The next round of talks will be held on January 19.

Meanwhile, Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said the Centre is positive to reach a solution through talks. “Today’s talks with farmers’ unions were not decisive. We will hold talks again on 19th January. We are positive to reach a solution through talks. The government is concerned about the farmers protesting in cold conditions,” he added.

Meanwhile, Bharatiya Kisan Union (Lok Shakti) on Saturday filed its reply before the Supreme Court against the committee constituted by the Apex Court to look into the farmers’ issue. The union had filed the plea in the Apex Court seeking repeal of the three farm laws. 

“It is important to pertain here with great regret that the principle of natural justice is going to be violated by appointing these persons as members of the committee. Members appointed by the Supreme Court of India, how they will hear all the farmers on equal parameters when they already supported these three farm laws,” the reply filed by BKUL stated.

It requested the Apex Court for passing its direction to remove all these three members from the committee and appoint those persons who make the report on the basis of mutual harmony, who can think fully about the interest of the farmers of India with impartiality, trust, goodwill, and appoint neutral and impartial personalities of the country, not related to any political party, read the reply by the BKUL.

Sardar Bhupinder Singh Mann, former MP and National President of BKU, one of the members of the committee constituted by the Supreme Court, has already recused himself, the BKUL stated.

Earlier, Samyukta Kisan Morcha, the platform of protesting farm unions, on Friday claimed that more farmers from other states are scheduled to join the ongoing farmers’ protests at and around Delhi borders.

Farmer union leader Darshan Pal said in a release, “We have already rejected even the very idea of “committee” proposed by the Union government or Supreme Court. The news of the Supreme Court-appointed committee members’ inclination towards the government is not hidden from anyone. We welcome member Bhupinder Mann’s decision to leave the committee, as well as we appeal to other members to express their opposition and hear the conscience by acknowledging the reality of these farm laws.”

He further told that more farmers from other states will also schedule to join the protest in the coming days. “Under the banner of “Mumbai for Farmers”, Maharashtra’s Farmers’ Organization, along with other progressive groups, are organising a huge rally and general meeting on January 16.”

He said that many misconceptions are being spread regarding the January 26 “Kisan Republic Parade” announced by the Samyuktan Kisan Morcha. “We are making it clear that we have no motive to harm the Republic Day parade by the parade of farmers. The detailed plan for this will be delivered only after a meeting of farmers’ organizations on January 17 and the hearing of the Supreme Court on January 18,” he added.

The farmers’ leader also opposed statements “by the group of ministers claiming that the Supreme Court should decide to repeal these laws.” The Lok Sabha is the house of people elected by the people of India. These laws have been made by Parliament and should be repealed by parliament, he added. 

Earlier, ahead of the ninth round of talks between the government officials and the farmers at Vigyan Bhavan here on Friday, the national spokesperson of Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU) Rakesh Tikait on Friday said the farmers would withdraw the Republic Day tractor parade if the Supreme Court orders.

Women farmers sitting inside tractor-trolley amid their protest against the new farm laws at SInghu Border in New Delhi on Friday. (ANI Photo)

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