Punjab Congress president Captain Amarinder Singh on Wednesday called for a strong and effective law against dispossessing debt-ridden farmers of their land.
He was reacting to the reports on farmers’ suicides in Punjab, expressing grief over a Barnala district incident in which a Jodhpur village farmer and his mother killed themselves when a commission agent brought police along to dispossess them of their land, following the court orders. Amarinder sought an all-party consensus on the matter so that the farmers were not forced to take any extreme step.
“Without wasting any time in politicking, let us move fast to enact the law to save the land and the lives of our farmers,” Amarinder said in his appeal to all political parties. He also sought a guarantee from the state government that the arthiyas (commission agents) also did not suffer any loss. “The law is very much possible and it only needs a strong political will,” he remarked.
As chief minister in 2006, he had mooted the legislation. The Congress, however, lost power and the Akalis who came to rule did not follow it up for the past nine years. Barnala legislator Kewal Singh Dhillon also expressed grief over twin suicides, demanding adequate compensation for the affected family.