LIVE: Farmers defer tractor march by a day over poor weather forecast

Union Ministers Narendra Singh Tomar, Piyush Goyal and Som Parkash along with government officials and representatives of farmers | Photo: @ANI
Farmers' protest LIVE updates Day 41: Protesting farmer unions on Tuesday deferred their proposed tractor march from January 6 to January 7 due to a bad weather forecast, even as they asserted they will intensify their stir in the coming days. 

The seventh round of talks between the government and protesting farmers ended inconclusively on Monday as unions stuck to their demand for a complete repeal of three farm laws they find pro-corporate, while the government wanted to discuss only "problematic" clauses or other alternatives to resolve the over one-month-long deadlock. The two sides decided to meet again on January 8, after no headway could be made in about one hour of talks in the first session, followed by almost two hours of break and barely 30 minutes of the second session.

Farmers have been camping at the Delhi border, protesting against the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020, the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act.

Enacted in September last year, the three farm laws have been projected by the central government as major reforms in the agriculture sector, promising to remove the middlemen and allowing the farmers to sell anywhere in the country.

However, the protesting farmers have expressed apprehension that the new laws would pave the way for eliminating the safety cushion of the MSP and do away with the mandi system, leaving them at the mercy of big corporates.

The government has repeatedly asserted that the MSP and mandi systems will stay and has accused the Opposition of inciting the farming community.

LIVE UPDATES

No relief for migrant labourers or justice for farmers, says Congress leader Anand Sharma

As the nation approaches Republic Day, there is no relief for migrant labourers or justice for farmers protesting in the bitter cold, said Congress leader and Rajya Sabha MP Anand Sharma on Tuesday.
 
Sharma tweeted, "We are living in strange times. No relief for the migrant labour, no justice for India's farmers fighting for their rights in bitter cold, pouring rain, tear gas and braving lathis. As we approach Ganatantra Diwas, we need to reflect on the state of the republic."
 
Regarding the project for construction of Parliament building, the Congress leader said, "Saddened by the Supreme Court endorsement of the government 's misplaced priorities during pandemic and clearing the Central Vista project, a unnecessary and colossal waste of public money."

Farmers defer Jan 6 tractor march by a day over poor weather forecast

Protesting farmer unions Tuesday deferred their proposed tractor march from January 6 to January 7 due to a bad weather forecast, even as they asserted they will intensify their stir in the coming days. Addressing a press conference at Singhu Border here, union leaders said thousands of farmers will take out the tractor march from all protest sites to the Kundli-Manesar-Palwal (KMP) on January 7.
 
Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav said the decision to defer the march was taken over forecast of bad weather condition on Wednesday. The city has been receiving rains sporadically over the past three days.
 
The unions said the agitation against the three agriculture laws will be intensified in the coming days. Talking about their other proposed tractor march to Delhi on January 26, farmer leader Joginder Nain said, "We will send 10 tractor trollies from every village in Haryana. We request people to come -- at least one from a house. and a total of 11 women from a village.

Farmers' protest LIVE updates: BJP leaders from Punjab meet PM Narendra Modi

BJP leaders from Punjab on Tuesday met Prime Minister Narendra Modi amid protests by farmers at Delhi's borders against the Centre's new agri laws for nearly six weeks. BJP leaders Surjit Kumar Jyani, who is also a former Punjab minister, and Harjit Singh Grewal met Prime Minister Modi at his residence.
 
Jyani was chairing the BJP's Kisan Coordination Committee for interacting with farmers in Punjab last year on the three farm bills which at that time had not been passed by Parliament.
 
Grewal was also a member of the committee. Talking to PTI, Grewal said their meeting with Prime Minister Modi was about Punjab related issues, but did not specify further.

BJP favouring wealthy people over farmers: Akhilesh Yadav

Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav on Tuesday accused the BJP of favouring wealthy people over farmers. In a Hindi tweet, Akhilesh Yadav said, "The biggest problem with the BJP government is that it does not consider itself as a public representative (jan pratinidhi) but as wealth representative (dhan pratinidhi).
 
Hence, for the wealthy people, it is putting farmers' interest at stake, he said, adding that the BJP has forgotten that those whom it is causing harm constitute two-third population of the country and never accept defeat.
 
Earlier too, the Samajwadi Party chief had accused the BJP of giving importance to its "capitalist friends" and said the farmers' protest against the new agriculture laws is an example of the government's "failure".

Repeal anti-farm laws, tweets Rahul Gandhi

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has attacked the government a day after the seventh round of talks with the farmer unions did not achieve any breakthrough. The eighth round of talks is scheduled for January 8.
 
Rahul Gandhi in a tweet said, "Modi govt's apathy and arrogance have claimed lives of over 60 farmers. Instead of wiping their tears, Government of India is busy attacking them with tear gas. Such brutality, just to promote crony capitalists' business interests. Repeal the anti-farm laws."
 
The Congress leader who is against the farm laws since they were enacted has been attacking the government and demanded withdrawal of the laws. The seventh round of talks of the farmer groups with the government at Vigyan Bhawan on Monday remained inconclusive as the farmers were adamant about withdrawal of the three farm laws.

Firm on their demands, farmers brave cold, rains as talks with govt remain deadlocked

Camping at Delhi borders for over a month now, protesting farmers seem undeterred in the face of severe cold, rains and waterlogging, and firm on their demands for repeal of farm laws and legal backing for MSP even as talks with the government remained inconclusive.

Protesters at Singhu border (Delhi- Haryana) affected due to continuous rainfall

Bengal to hold assembly session to pass resolution against farm laws

Continuing her tirade against the Centre over the new farm laws, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday said arrangements would soon be made to convene an assembly session to pass a resolution against the contentious Acts.
 
With assembly polls knocking at the door, Banerjee also hinted that she was ready to implement the PM-Kisan scheme in Bengal, if the farmers benefitted out of it and said she had asked the Centre to share details of all those who have registered themselves on the Union government's portal for the programme.
 
Banerjee, however, asserted that said she would never allow the implementation of the three farm laws, which have sparked protests across the country. Read on...

Repeal farm laws, don't make it prestige issue: Ashok Gehlot to Centre

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Tuesday said that the central government should regularly talk to farmers, accept their demands to revoke the new farm laws and not make it a prestige issue.
 
"Why is the central government taking four days in between every meeting with the farmers? The farmers have clarified that central government must withdraw new agricultural laws. In this cold weather, the government should talk to farmers daily and must accept their demands," Gehlot tweeted.
 
"If a government has to withdraw a law according to public sentiments, it is welcomed in democracy. The central government should not make it a prestige issue. Farmers are our food providers, and it is the moral duty of the government to accept their demands," he added.
 
His statement comes after the eighth round of talks when the Centre could not reach any "solution" as the farmer unions remained "adamant" over repeal of three farm laws, Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said on Monday.



 


Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel