Farmers marked six months of nationwide struggle against the central government’s three farm laws by protesting and waving black flags at Delhi borders and other parts of the country on May 26, 2021, Buddha Purnima.
On the call of farmers’ body Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM), farmers in Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and other regions waved flags and spoke out against recent anti-people-dubbed laws such as the dilution of the Land Acquisition Act 2013, the failure to provide Minimum Support Price (MSP) to all, decent MSP hikes, labour codes and the failure to farmers from natural disasters in the age of climate change.
“The Modi government took several decisions that went against not just farmers but other ordinary citizens too. This government has adopted repressive measures against farmers, workers, poor, Dalits, women, adivasis, students, youth, small traders and entrepreneurs, others and also against the environment, in its seven years of governance so far,” said the SKM.
Farmers waved black flags and burnt effigies of the government in areas near Ghazipur and Singhu borders to condemn the central government for the three laws – the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance & Farm Services Act, the Farmer’s Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act. According to SKM legal member Vasu Kukreja, participants at the former site had to “rescued the effigy from police and burn it at the border.”
Meanwhile, a black flag demonstration was held at the national capital wherein All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) General Secretary Hannan Mollah, CITU Secretary A R Sindhu, AIDWA General Secretary Mariam Dhawale and other burnt effigies as well.
Maharashtra’s farmers held demonstrations in Shevgaon, Ahmednagar and other cities in the state. Participants voiced their grievances against the central government and demanded an immediate repeal of the three laws and a legal guarantee to MSP.
Similarly, southern states like Tamil Nadu and Karnataka gave an enthusiastic response to the SKM call. Villagers from rural India gathered outside their houses and fields to voice their solidarity with the national protest.
Farmers at Siddaveerappa, women farmers in Kolar district and people from Vijaynagar district hung black flags outside their houses in Karnataka.
Along with political leaders, people’s organisations like the National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM) also demonstrated with farmers. The NAPM denounced the government’s agricultural and environmental laws, and protested its attack on “every welfare measure from PDS and pensions to subsidies on health, education, cooking gas etc, the measures have contributed to price rise, inflation and unemployment.”
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