The ninth round of talks between the central government and farmer unions over the farm laws again failed to break the deadlock as the two sides could not reach common ground on the issues of repeal of the laws and the MSP Act. The next meeting will take place on January 19 at 12 pm.
This was the first meeting after the Supreme Court appointed a committee to resolve the deadlock over farm laws. Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, Railways, Commerce and Food Minister Piyush Goyal and Minister of State for Commerce Som Parkash, who is an MP from Punjab, held talks with the representatives of around 40 farmer unions for over four hours. Tomar had on Thursday confirmed the talks saying it will be done with ‘an open mind’.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi Friday asked the people to join the “Satyagraha” by farmers against the Modi government. The Congress is observing the day as Kisan Adhikar Divas and will take out protest marches in all state capitals. Gandhi, who was in Delhi, said the three farm laws have been brought to “finish the farmers”. “If we don’t stop this now, it will continue to happen in other sectors too. Narendra Modi does not respect the farmers. The farmers will neither deter nor fear,” ANI quoted him as saying.
Meanwhile, Uttar Pradesh Congress president Ajay Kumar Lallu and party workers were detained while trying to march towards Raj Bhavan in Lucknow during a protest against the new farm laws.