‘Farmers won’t be scared’: Bhupesh Baghel on BJP 'maligning' farm laws stir
Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel on Monday hit out at leaders of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for labelling farmers protesting against the three contentious farm laws as “Pakistanis” and “Khalistanis”. Baghel further warned the BJP that the “farmers won’t be scared,” adding that the National Students Union of India (NSUI), the student wing of the Congress, has sent rice and some money for farmers protesting on the borders of Delhi.
“Whenever there’s a protest, the BJP tries to malign it. As for protesting farmers, sometimes they (BJP), called them Pakistani and Khalistani. They even alleged that farmers are middleman’s brokers. Regardless of their attempts to suppress, farmers won’t be scared,” news agency ANI quoted Baghel as saying.
Several leaders of the BJP have come under fire for alleging that Khalistanis or Sikh separatists have “infiltrated” the ongoing farmers agitation. Among other things, the farmers have also been labelled “Pakistanis,” “Naxals” and “Urban Naxals” by leaders and supporters of the BJP. Farmers have also accused the Centre of harassing those who have supported their protests; several people who have supported the farmers have received notice from the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
“The NSUI has organised a program here in support of farmers protesting at Delhi borders. Under the program, they’ve collected 53 tons of rice and ₹68,000 which have been sent to Delhi,” Baghel further said.
Last week, the Supreme Court stayed the implementation of the three laws until further orders. On Monday, the top court deferred hearing on a plea filed by the Delhi Police seeking an injunction on the proposed tractor march by the farmers on January 26, till Wednesday.
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