MEA issues statement after Rihanna and others extend support to so-called farmers, slams sensationalist social media comments: Read

MEA issues statement urging people to learn facts before commenting on farmer protests

After several international artists like Rihanna, pornstars like Mia Khalifa and climate activists like Greta Thunberg tweeted in support of the protest by so-called farmers, who had run amok in the capital on 26th January in a planned insurrection, the Ministry of External Affairs has issued a statement. The MEA statement urges people to first research and understand the issue at hand before commenting on the same.

After the celebrities, politicians like pro-Khalistan Canadian MP Jagmeet Singh and US Vice President Kamala Harris’ niece Meena Harris, too, extended their support to the ‘farmer’ protests.

The MEA went on to say that “The temptation of sensationalist social media hashtags and comments, especially when resorted to by celebrities and others, is neither accurate nor responsible”.

Anurag Srivastava, Official Spokesperson, Ministry of External Affairs, said in the statement that the Parliament of India passed the Agriculture Laws after a full debate and discussion. These reforms will give expanded market access, provide greater flexibility to farmers and pave the way for economically and ecologically sustainable farming.

“Respecting the sentiments of the protestors, the Government of India has initiated a series of talks with their representatives. Union Ministers have been part of the negotiations, and eleven rounds of talks have already been held.” He added.

‘Vested interest groups trying to enforce their agenda on these protests’, says MEA

Srivastava further said in the statement that it is unfortunate to see that groups with vested interests are trying to enforce their agenda on these protests and derail them.

He further talked about the Republic Day Riots. He said, “A cherished national commemoration, the anniversary of the inauguration of the Constitution of India, was besmirched, and violence and vandalism took place in the Indian capital. Some of these vested interest groups have also tried to mobilise international support against India. Instigated by such fringe elements, Mahatma Gandhi statues have been desecrated in parts of the world.”

Police personnel were seriously injured

MEA pointed out the violence that erupted on Republic Day and said that hundreds of men and women serving in the police had been physically attacked and in some cases stabbed and seriously wounded. “We would like to emphasise that these protests must be seen in the context of India’s democratic ethos and polity,” he added.

Full statement by MEA

The Parliament of India, after a full debate and discussion, passed reformist legislation relating to the agricultural sector. These reforms give expanded market access and provided greater flexibility to farmers. They also pave the way for economically and ecologically sustainable farming.

A very small section of farmers in parts of India has some reservations about these reforms. Respecting the sentiments of the protestors, the Government of India has initiated a series of talks with their representatives. Union Ministers have been part of the negotiations, and eleven rounds of talks have already been held. The Government has even offered to keep the laws on hold. an offer iterated by no less than the Prime Minister of India.

Yet, it is unfortunate to see vested interest groups trying to enforce their agenda on these protests, and derail them. This was egregiously witnessed on January 26, India’s Republic Day. A cherished national commemoration, the anniversary of the inauguration of the Constitution of India, was besmirched, and violence and vandalism took place in the Indian capital.

Some of these vested interest groups have also tried to mobilise international support against India. Instigated by such fringe elements, Mahatma Gandhi statues have been desecrated in parts of the world. This is extremely disturbing for India and for civilised society everywhere. Indian police forces have handled these protests with utmost restraint. It may be noted that hundreds of men and women serving in the police have been physically attacked, and in some cases stabbed and seriously wounded.

We would like to emphasise that these protests must be seen in the context of India’s democratic ethos and polity and the efforts of the Government and the concerned farmer groups to resolve the impasse.

Before rushing to comment on such matters, we would urge that the facts be ascertained, and a proper understanding of the issues at hand be undertaken. The temptation of sensationalist social media hashtags and comments, especially when resorted to by celebrities and others, is neither accurate nor responsible.

#IndiaTogether #IndiaAgainstPropaganda

OpIndia Staff: Staff reporter at OpIndia