Farmers’ protest: JJP suggests written assurance from Centre on MSP
The Jannayak Janta Party (JJP), the coalition partner of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Haryana, on Tuesday suggested that the Centre should give a written assurance to the agitating farmers that the practice of procuring food grains on the minimum support price (MSP) will continue.
“People holding high positions in the (Union) government have been repeatedly giving statements that the MSP regime will continue. Union agriculture minister has said so... Prime Minister has reiterated that the MSP will continue...then what is the harm in adding that line,” Ajay Singh Chautala, party chief and former MP, told reporters in Sirsa.
Repeatedly referring to the farmers as “annadata” who he said is “very disturbed and sitting on the roads”, Chautala said the deadlock should be resolved at the earliest. “Everyone is facing problems, including the government, people...We have been urging the government to find out a solution to the problems of farmers,” he said.
This is for the first time that the JJP, which primarily banks on the support of the farming community, has categorically demanded a written assurance from the Centre on MSP to break the logjam. Not only the farmers’ union leaders but the opposition parties too have been asking the Centre to include in the farm bills that the MSP will not be discontinued.
The official stand of the JJP, so far, on the farms laws has been that there is no question of doing away with the MSP regime, that the farm laws are in favour of the peasants and that the Congress has been misleading the farmers.
Right from the beginning of the unrest among the peasants over Centre’s three farm laws, the JJP has been walking a tight rope. The BJP has 40 MLAs in 90-member assembly and the JJP’s support is crucial even as there are five independent MLAs supporting the saffron party. The JJP has 10 MLAs and the pressure has been mounting on the party from its constituents the Jat community, predominantly the peasants.