SKM to decide on Jan 15 if farm unions contesting polls can stay in organisation

Updated on Dec 25, 2021 09:47 PM IST

Earlier in the day, it was reported that Balbir Singh Rajewal will lead the new political front Samyukt Samaj Morcha in the upcoming Punjab assembly elections. He said was under severe pressure from the people of the state to contest the polls.

After year-long protests against the Centre's three farm laws, Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month announced the government's decision to repeal the laws. (ANI Photo)
After year-long protests against the Centre's three farm laws, Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month announced the government's decision to repeal the laws. (ANI Photo)
Written by Sharangee Dutta | Edited by Poulomi Ghosh, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), which has consistently maintained its stance on not allowing political parties to use its name, said on Saturday that in the national meeting scheduled on January 15, 2022, the organisation will decide if farmer unions and leaders taking part in polls can remain within the SKM. The statement comes hours after 22 farmer unions, which were part of the organisation, decided to float their political party - Samyukt Samaj Morcha and contest all 117 constituencies of the Punjab assembly polls.

In a fresh clarification, the SKM said that it has nothing to do with today's “declaration by some Punjab farmer organisations to form a ‘Samyukt Samaj Morcha’ to contest assembly polls,” according to news agency ANI.

“[In] the forthcoming national SKM meeting scheduled for January 15, [it will be decided] whether farmers organisations and leaders who take part in elections can remain within [the] SKM,” the statement further read.

Earlier in the day, Hindustan Times reported that the Samyukt Samaj Morcha will be led by Balbir Singh Rajewal.

Rajewal pointed out that he was under severe pressure from the people of Punjab to contest the upcoming assembly polls, following the farmer unions and its leaders spearheading the year-long farmers' protest against the three farm laws in the state as well as Delhi borders. Notably, Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month announced the Centre's decision to repeal the farm laws.

Meanwhile, three farm bodies, including the BKU (Dakounda) and BKU (Lakhowal) are yet to decide if they will join the newly formed Samyukt Samaj Morcha.

The upcoming Punjab polls is crucial as it will happen in the aftermath of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Centre deciding to repeal the farm laws, as was demanded by the farm unions since the passing of the laws. Furthermore, this is also the first elections since the Punjab Congress crisis that saw the ruling party's chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh resign from the post as well as the party.

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