The Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena on Tuesday come together and joined the nation-wide protests by Shetkari Bachav Sanyukt Kriti Samiti, led by labour unions and other organisations, against the new farm laws of the BJP-led central government.
Ever since the three parties came together to form the Maha Vikas Aghadi government in the state, their local units have put up an united front on social issues.
Members of the three alliance partners joined the protest, led by social activist Baba Adhav and convenor of various social organisations Nitin Pawar, in the city on Tuesday. The protesters were denied permission to march from Alka Chowk to Tilak statue, so they held a protest at Alka Chowk.
Adhav took on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah for “increasing suffering of poor farmers”. “The economic gap between the rich and poor has increased under BJP rule. Select industrialists are becoming richer while the poor are becoming poorer day by day,” he said, adding the farmers and labourers have now united for a common cause.
The activist alleged that the rich have plunged the banking sector in crisis. “It is the rich defaulters who have got loan waivers while the poor farmers struggle in life with no waiver for their smaller loan amounts,” he said, adding that the central government should stop talking about ‘atmanirbhar’ and the youth should ask the government to allow them to decide their own future.
Communist leader Ajit Abhyankar alleged that through the new farm laws, the central government is handing over control of the agriculture sector to the corporates.
Meanwhile, NCP leader Ankush Kakade took on city traders for their refusal to keep their stores shut in support of farmers. “The traders’ association declared their support by joining the protest, but they didn’t shut their stores. Such support is not needed. If the traders care for the farmers, then they should have kept the stores closed for four hours. They should not forget that their businesses will survive only if the farmers survive,” he said.
City Congress chief Ramesh Bagwe said the BJP-led government has done injustice to farmers by bringing farm laws that would add to their suffering. “We will continue to stand by the farmers and ensure justice for them,” he said.
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