Farmers lament Centre’s vague and nonspecific letter for talks

Let down by the central government’s unimpressive letter for talks on December 30, farmer leaders assert their demands and discuss future protests

Farmer leaders expressed disappointment at the government letter received in response to the letter sent by them on December 26, 2020 saying it was “woefully short of any attempt to resolve issues.”

“While farmers want meeting on four specific agenda items… the government has used vague and nonspecific language, indicating its willingness to discuss the full agenda items proposed by farmers,” said the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC) in a press release on December 28.

Earlier, farmers had sent a letter that listed modalities for the repeal of the three Central farm Acts, mechanisms to make remunerative MSP into a legally guaranteed entitlement, amendments in the Commission for the Air Quality Management in National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas Ordinance, 2020 and changes to the draft Electricity Amendment Bill 2020 to protect farmers as its agenda items.

However, the organisation complained that the government of India was not forthcoming with an open mind and thus rejecting the full agenda proposed by farmers.

Similarly, the AIKSCC appealed to Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh ’s read sections 9 and 14 of the Contract Act before assuring farmers that their land is safe.

“His appeal to allow the farm laws to play out for 2 years is an unfortunate statement from a senior politician. If these laws are allowed to be implemented, there will be nothing to discuss. Agriculture, agri-produce marketing and food chain will by then be firmly in the clutches of crony capitalists and monopolists,” they said.

Leaders criticised the central government for taking an unreasonable position on Minimum Support Price (MSP) by saying it is already giving MSP and is ready to give assurance as well. They said the government does not give MSP as per the National Farmers Policy – C2+50 percent. Few farmers get what is declared, highlighting farmers’ misery. Further, they said that because the new laws take away all existing rights including the meagre MSP, the demand for repeal relates to first restoration of all existing rights and then appraisal of other demands.

At the ground-level, farmers’ movement continues to gain strength with new forces joining dharnas every day. Punjab and other farmers organizations are observing the sacrifice of the tenth Guru’s children in the struggle against injustice. Rallies and programs across India continue to pay homage to martyrs of Delhi Dharna.

The AIKSCC reiterated that open toll plazas campaign and boycott Reliance mobile service campaigns continue to gain strength. Hundreds of tolls have already been freed as per AIKSCC reports.

Farmers also adopted a unique method to welcome the New Year with an oath to intensify farmers’ struggle. This will include hundreds of mass organizations in each district organising scores of programs for people to pledge their support to farmers movement and its demand throughout 2021. According to the AIKSCC “crores of Indians” will participate.

Meanwhile, tens of thousands of people in Hyderabad and Imphal cities have geared up for December 30 protest rallies with Patna and Thanjavur protesters resolving to continue protests another day. Protest groups at the Ghazipur border and the Shahjahanpur border have also increased. The tractor rally for December 30 will begin on December 29 from the Singhu border.


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Farmer leaders call for talks with Central Gov’t on December 29
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