Farmers to meet Amit Shah today before 6th round of talks tomorrow
As the four-hour Bharat Bandh called by farmers protesting against the farm laws recently passed by Parliament comes to a close, farmers are likely to meet Union home minister Amit Shah on Tuesday. National spokesperson of Bhartiya Kisan Union Rakesh Tikait said farmer leaders will meet the home minister on Tuesday at around 7pm.
The farmers’ unions which have been protesting since November 26 demanding an immediate withdrawal of the farm laws that they apprehend will corporatise farming are scheduled to meet Union ministers on Wednesday for another round of talks. In Wednesday’s meeting, the Centre is supposed to new draft to the farmers, though both sides remain quite unwavering on their stance — the protesting farmers on their demand to completely withdraw the laws, and the Centre on its decision to amend the laws instead of withdrawing.
Hectic parleys went on throughout Tuesday in preparation for Wednesday’s talks as agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar met Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar.
So far, there have been five rounds of negotiations between the farmers and the Centre since September. The farmers walked out of the first meeting in September as there was no minister present in the meeting. Three rounds of talks took place in December after the farmers started their ‘Dilli Chalo’ protest. Though there has been no headway so far, the proposed meeting between the farmers and home minister Amit Shah comes as a significant development, indicating that the top level of the government is engaged in addressing the farmers’ issues and overcoming the stalemate situation.
On Wednesday, several opposition parties will also meet and take a collective stand on the ongoing farmers’ protest before meeting President Ram Nath Kovind, NCP president Sharad Pawar has said.
The ongoing protest against Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020, the Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, and The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act 2020 gathered momentum after political parties, celebrities supported farmers’ cause.
The call for nationwide strike on December 8 too received support from political parties, a number of trade, transport, bank unions.