Farmers’ Protest Highlights: The Centre on Sunday sent out an invite to the farmers’ unions for join discussion with the government again and asked them to fix the date of the meeting at Vigyan Bhavan according to their convenience. Meanwhile, protesting farmers have announced that they will organise a day-long relay hunger strike Monday and block all toll collection on the national highways in Haryana from December 25-27.
Earlier in the day, Union Minister VK Singh said Sunday that the ongoing protests by farmers against the three Central farm laws was “more political” in nature and underlined the NDA government’s intent to ensure the welfare of the peasants. Speaking to reporters in Tamil Nadu’s Thanjavur ahead of his interaction with farmers, the Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways claimed that “actual farmers are very happy with what has been done in last six months.”
Farmers at Ghazipur (Delhi-UP border) will observe ‘Shahidi Diwas’ today. “We’ll observe Shahidi Divas today and pay tribute to those who lost their lives during this movement,” Mange Ram Tyagi, Chief Secy, Delhi-NCR, Bhartiya Kisan Union, was quoted as saying by ANI.
Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar Saturday said that the government is ready for talks with the farmers if they “come forward without seeking a yes or no response” to their demand, news agency PTI reported. On the other hand, BJP leader and former Union Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh declared that the farmers’ protest against the new farm laws is now “everybody’s agitation”. He joined a dharna in their support on Friday at Sampla in Jhajjar district of Haryana. The sit-in had been organised by members of the Sir Chhotu Ram Manch — Birender Singh is the grandson of Sir Chhotu Ram, pre-independent India’s tallest Jat leader and the driving force behind several laws and measures to end exploitation of farmers by moneylenders. Singh’s son Brijendra Singh is the BJP MP from Hisar.
Birender Singh said he was keen to go to the borders of Delhi where the protests have entered the 25th day. “I stand by them. This is everybody’s agitation now. It’s not limited to a section of society. I am already in the field and have made up my mind. If I am not in the frontline, then people will feel that I am just doing politics, nothing else,” he told The Indian Express.