Maharashtra farmers to leave for Delhi on December 21

On-ground reports of farmers' movement prove contrary to the mainstream narrative of dwindling momentum



Contrary to what mainstream media would have people believe, various parts of the country are persisting with demonstrations to support farmers’ struggle against the three farm laws passed by the central government.

Maharashtra’s All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) announced that thousands of farmers would leave for Delhi from Nashik on December 21, 2020 to support the historic peasant struggle. Farmers from over 20 villages will gather for a Vehicle March towards the capital city and strengthen the historic struggle of Indian farmers against the central government’s three anti-farmer laws.

People will travel for 1,266 kms to meet the farmers camping around Delhi for the last three weeks. Later, they will join the struggle at the Rajasthan-Haryana border near Shahjahanpur around December 24.

“The Vehicle Jatha will begin with a massive public meeting at Nashik on Monday afternoon. Members will organise a large demonstration at the Reliance Petrol Pump after leaving Nashik. Thousands of people at Ozar, Pimpalgaon Baswant, Chandwad, Umrane, Malegaon, Dhule and Shirpur in Nashik and Dhule districts will welcome the group before they enter Madhya Pradesh,” said the AIKS in a press release.

Meanwhile, farmers’ protests and unrest is spreading like wildfire in southern and northern regions.

The unofficial Farmers, Dalits and Workers United Struggle coalition continued their indefinite struggle in the heart of Bangalore in Karnataka to oppose the three central laws – the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance & Farm Services Act, the Farmer’s Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act – as well as the recent state amendments made to land reforms and the APMC Act.

Founder of Charaka – an organisation supporting hundreds of India’s handloom weavers and artisans – Prasanna and farmer leader Kuruburu Shanthakumar told nearly 500 protesters that the ongoing agitation is a movement to protect rural culture and life.

Earlier, Kolkata in West Bengal saw a 30,000 strong farmers rally on December 16 demanding repeal of the three anti-farmer-dubbed laws of the central government. According to the farmers’ unit in Delhi, huge sit-in protests are being held in thousands of locations.

“Farmers of India have rejected the laws created by the Central Govt. about the present and future of farmers, without consulting farmers and unless these laws are rolled back, the unrest will rise,” said farmer leaders.

In response to the growing farmers unrest, Prime Minister Narendra Modi intends to speak to Madhya Pradesh farmers about the “beneficial provisions” of the Acts. The event is a part of a state-level, four-day programme to engage with farmers. Modi’s speech will begin at 2 PM at the Madhya Pradesh Public Relations Department.

Around 20,000 farmers are expected to participate in the event. Following the event, Chief Minister Shivraj Chouhan will transfer Rs 1,600 crore into the bank accounts of 35.5 lakh farmers as part of the Kharif crop damage programme.

However, the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC) expressed shock at the central government’s arrogance in denying the justified demand to repeal the laws.

“Instead of focusing on the real issue, the government is coming up with new spins every day to discredit and denigrate people who elected it and gave it the right to govern. The grammar of democratic governance must be articulated by the government. Constitutional institutions like Courts exist for checks and balances, not as replacement of the obligations to be performed by the political executive,” they said.


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