‘Please focus on our concern’: Rakesh Tikait tweets to US President Biden ahead of meeting with PM Modi
Farmer leader Rakesh Tikait on Friday urged US President Joe Biden to "focus" on the three contentious farm laws passed by the Centre ahead of his meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Tikait talked about their protest against the farm laws and said hundreds of farmers have died during their agitation. “Dear @POTUS, we the Indian Farmers are protesting against 3 farm laws brought by PM Modi's govt. 700 farmers have died in the last 11 months protesting. These black laws should be repealed to save us. Please focus on our concern while meeting PM Modi,” Tikait, the spokesperson of Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU), tweeted.
PM Modi, who is in the United States on a three-day visit, will hold a bilateral meeting with President Biden at the White House on Friday evening—the first in-person meeting between the two leaders after the Democrat leader took office on January 20.
Bharatiya Kisan Union, which is one of the farmer unions protesting against the three farm laws, has also said NRI farmers will protest against PM Modi’s visit to the US. “Tomorrow in Washington DC, NRI farmers will protest against Modi's US visit,” BKU tweeted on Thursday.
Last week, Tikait said farmers will continue to protest at Delhi’s borders till the three controversial agriculture laws are withdrawn as he alleged a nexus between the central government and corporates to “rob” the farmers of their rights. Farmers, Tikait said, are now aware of their rights as he accused the Centre of being insensitive towards farmers and said time has come for the “farmer warriors to shake the roots of the government”.
Hundreds of farmers led by the Samyukta Kisan Morcha have been protesting at Delhi's borders since November last year demanding a rollback of the three farm laws. Farmers fear these farm laws will do away with the minimum support price (MSP) system, leaving them at the mercy of big corporations. The government, however, has maintained that the laws are pro-farmer and has offered to amend them. Both sides have held as many as 11 rounds of talks but the impasse is yet to be broken.
The Samyukt Kisan Morcha has given a call for a complete Bharat Bandh on September 27 to ensure all roads, trains, markets and educational institutions will remain closed from 6am to 4pm. Leaders of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha have urged farmers, members of trade unions and government employees to support the Bharat Bandh call.