Udayavni Special

New farm laws ‘death warrant’ for farmers, says Kejriwal


PTI, Feb 28, 2021, 7:51 PM IST

Meerut: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday called the new farm laws “death warrant” for farmers as they would take away their land and reduce them to labourers in their own farm.

Addressing a Kisan Mahapanchayat organised in Meerut by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) against the Centre”s contentious laws, Kejriwal said farmers are continuously agitating in the cold because their farms will be taken over by capitalists.

He claimed that three-and-a-half lakh farmers have committed suicide in the last 25 years.

The AAP national convener alleged that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) cheated the farmers after coming to power.

Today, farmers are being tortured all over the country, Kejriwal claimed. Water cannons are being used against them and iron nails are studded on roads to restrict their movement, he said.

Stressing that farmers are not enemies of the country, he accused the Union government of surpassing the Britishers in oppressing people.

Kejriwal further alleged that the farmers are being falsely prosecuted.

“These people (government) were behind the incident at the Red Fort. All the people coming to me said that these people deliberately gave way to the farmers so that they move towards the Red Fort. Those who hoisted the flag were their own workers,” Kejriwal alleged.

Tens of thousands of protesting farmers clashed with the police in the national capital on January 26, 2021 during a tractor parade to highlight their demands.

Many of them, driving tractors, reached the Red Fort and entered the monument, where a religious flag was hoisted. Over 500 police personnel were injured, and one protestor died.

Kejriwal said that farmers can be anything but traitors, however, the BJP government is suing them for treason and calling them terrorists.

He claimed that in its 2014 election manifesto, the BJP had said that it woul implement the Swaminathan Commission report and MSP (minimum support price) at 50 per cent more than actual cost of production would be given to farmers.

But upon forming the government, the party gave an affidavit to the Supreme Court saying it was not possible to increase MSP as it would distort the market.

Kejriwal said, “All the governments in last 70 years have cheated farmers who have only want to get paid for their produce. In every party”s manifesto, promises are made to farmers but never fulfilled.”

The Delhi chief minister claimed that the central government had sought to turn nine stadiums into temporary jails to house the farmers but he did not approve the files.

“If we had allowed the jails to be built, farmers would have been imprisoned there and the whole movement would have ended,” he said.

Kejriwal said farmer leader Rakesh Tikait is fighting for the rights of peasants at the Delhi border but the government made him cry as it wanted to forcefully end the agitation.

Targeting the Uttar Pradesh government, Kejriwal said sugar mills in the state owe Rs 18,000 crore to the farmers and the Yogi Adityanath government has not been able to get the dues cleared.

“I want to ask Yogiji what is the helplessness, why your entire government is kneeling before the sugar mill owners. Shame on your government if you can”t get the mill owners to pay the farmers,” he said.

Kejriwal said that people of Uttar Pradesh must elect a government with the right intentions in the next elections and the day that happens, farmers will never have to worry about getting paid on time.

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