The farmers protesting against the Modi government over new farm laws have rejected Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s proposal for a discussion on their grievances.
According to the reports, the protesting farmers who are blocking roads at the outskirts of Delhi said that they have rejected the offer claiming that the talks proposed by Amit Shah were conditional. The farmers, however, insisted that the Union Home Minister should visit the farmers and hold talks ‘without any conditions.’
The farmers contend that the government is imposing conditions on the talks. AAP founding member and chief of political outfit Swaraj India Yogendra Yadav speaking on behalf of agitating farmers said that farmers have now taken the decision to turn down the offer and will continue to sit on the borders of Delhi.
Farmers’ organisations have expressed reservations about the offer. Jagjit Singh, Bharatiya Kisan Union’s Punjab President, said, “He should have offered talks with an open heart without any condition”.
Home Minister calls farmers for talks, farmer orgs reject
Earlier, the Home Minister in a goodwill gesture had said the government was willing to talk on “every problem and demand”. He also urged the farmers to move their protest to a designated spot near Burari in the national capital. The government’s decision to hold talks with farmers came after the so-called farmers began to block the highways causing inconvenience to citizens.
The Home Minister had appealed to all unions on Friday evening and had also personally called three farmer leaders – Joginder Singh Ugrahan, president of Bharti Kisan Union (Ugrahan), Jagjit Singh Dallewal, president of BKU ( Sidhupur) and Balbir Singh Rajewal, President of BKU (Rajewal).
Speaking to the media, Ugrahan said that the Union Home Minister called him at around 12.20 pm on Friday and appealed to them not to seal the borders of Delhi and instead go to Nirankari Bhawan, Burari.
The farmer leaders said that even he understood that blocking the borders is causing inconvenience to masses, but they not ready to move to Burari.
The farmers now want to hold the protests at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar.
The farmers’ decision came after a meeting this morning, shortly after Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on his monthly radio address ‘Mann ki Baat’, had clarified on the farm laws, saying the agricultural reforms have “unshackled” the farmers and given them “new rights and opportunities”.