Still seething at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “andolanjivi” comment, Haryana farmers in Uchana city, Jind district launched a “Mai bhi Andolanwaadi” campaign on February 11, 2021, said Amar Ujala.
Sarva Jaatiya Kheda Khap President Satbir Pahalawan Barsola said that Mahatma Gandhi and Bhagat Singh also organised protests to liberate India from British rule. He argued that if those freedom fighters are to be called “andolanwaadi” as well then farmers proudly declared themselves the same.
“We are agitating not only for farmers but for every class,” Barsola told Amar Ujala.
He said that every Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader agitated before coming to power. Many leaders even took off their kurtas as a sign of protest. He questioned why protests are considered legitimate when BJP members engaged in it but the same agitations are condemned if someone else undertakes them. Barsola asked, “If the Prime Minister becomes teary-eyed in the Rajya Sabha then it is considered dignified, but if a farmer leader cries then it is called drama! Why so?”
Similarly, he asked why the central government hesitated to legalise Minimum Support Price (MSP) when Modi kept assuring peasants that MSP will remain. MSP is a necessity for small and marginal farmers who are steadily losing land. The number of big landowners is decreasing. In such a situation, small landowners are more in the village.
Barsola also pointed out that an assured MSP for farmers’ crops will improve their economic condition. Therefore, the central government should legalise MSP while repealing the three laws at the same time. Other leaders such as Azad Palawan, Pala Barsola, Deepak Valmiki, Ramdhari Sharma, Sikkim Safakheri, present at the time, agreed with Barsola.
The event where Barsola spoke was attended by hundreds of women who traveled to the Delhi border to participate in the peasant movement. They sang Haryanvi songs to condemn the central government for their actions. Social worker Mohit Lather also attended the event and said that the farmer movement is gathering support every day.