‘For our farmer brothers’: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday urged people to observe a one-day fast in solidarity with farmers protesting against the farm laws. He himself is doing so in response to a call given by the farmers protesting at the Singhu border near Delhi. “Fasting is sacred. Wherever you are, fast for our farmer brothers. Pray to God for the success of their struggle,” Kejriwal wrote in a tweet in Hindi. “In the end, farmers will definitely win,” he also said.
Farmers from various parts of the country are holding protests against the three contentious farm laws that were passed by Parliament in September. The three laws are the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act 2020.
The protest entered 19th day on Monday as the agitating farmers staged sit-ins and hunger strike in nationwide protest on Monday. The fast on Monday is being observed from 8 am to 5 pm in demand to repeal the laws.
It comes a day after farmers had blocked the Delhi-Jaipur highway at Shahjahanpur. More and more farmers have been joining the agitation at several border points in the national capital.
Several rounds of talks between farmers and the Centre have taken place, but it has so far failed to resolve the deadlock. The farmers are firm on their demand of complete withdrawal of the three laws while the government has offered to make amendments in the laws, which has been rejected by the farmers.
Farmers’ unions, particularly in Punjab and Haryana, say that the new laws will lead to the dismantling of the MSP system under which government agencies buy their crop at an assured price. The Centre claims that the laws will remove the role of the middlemen, allowing the farmers to sell their produce anywhere in the country.
Meanwhile, a meeting was held between agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar, minister of state for commerce and industry Som Parkash and Union home minister Amit Shah to solve the impasse.