‘Haste’: Pawar underlines why govt is facing outrage from farmers
Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar on Sunday said the government is facing problems due to the farmers’ protests because they hastily passed the farm bills and chose not to listen to the concerns raised by the Opposition during the Monsoon Session of Parliament in September.
“When Bill was being passed, we’d requested the government that they shouldn’t be in a hurry, it should be sent to the Select Committee and a discussion is needed, but that didn’t happen and the Bill was passed in haste. Now the government is facing problems because of that haste,” Pawar was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
Lending his support to the protesting farmers’ unions from Punjab, the NCP chief said he fears that farmers from all over the country will support them if the situation is not resolved quickly. Pawar also highlighted that protesting farmers in Haryana and Punjab are the main cultivators of paddy and wheat, both of which are essential foodgrains.
The monsoon session witnessed heated arguments between the ruling NDA and the opposition parties in both houses. The bills - Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill; the Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill; and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill - were passed in the Lok Sabha due to BJP’s majority in the Lower House but its passage in the Rajya Sabha witnessed a lot of chaos.
On September 22, Aam Aadmi Party’s Sanjay Singh, Derek O’Brien and Dola Sen (Trinamool Congress); Congress’ Rajeev Satav, Syed Nasir Hussain, and Ripun Borah; and KK Ragesh and Elamaram Kareem of the Communist Party of India (M) were suspended for a week for unruly behaviour.
These MPs had protested against the passage of these bills inside the well of the House and were suspended for behaving in an unruly manner. Rajya Sabha deputy chairman Harivansh. Pawar on September 23 had fasted protesting against the suspension of these eight Rajya Sabha MPs as well as the passage of the farm bills.
The farmers’ unions and the Centre have not reached an agreement on the demands raised by the farm groups. The farmers’ groups despite repeated assurances from the government will go ahead with the countrywide strike on December 8. The Centre and farmers’ unions will meet on December 9 to hold the sixth round of talks regarding the farm bills.