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Group of retd civil servants slams Centre approach on farmers

The statement says the government’s approach has been adversarial, treating “apolitical farmers like an irresponsible opposition to be derided, demonised and defeated”.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
February 6, 2021 3:37:58 am
Darshan Pal, farmer protest, farm leader, farmers chakka jam, Narendra Tomar, farmer government talks, farmers news, indian express newsFarmers claimed that 204 protesters have died so far — a fact that was being ignored by the government. (File)

A group of 75 retired civil servants has issued an open statement, hitting out at the government’s approach against the protesting farmers and “efforts to lay the blame on the farmers for the disruption of law and order” on January 26.

The Constitutional Conduct Group, which includes names such as Sharad Behar, A S Dulat, Wajahat Habibullah, Najeeb Jung, Sunil Mitra and Julio Ribeiro, has said it would “like to reassert and reiterate our support for the farmers who are agitating for repeal of the three farm laws”.

The statement says the government’s approach has been adversarial, treating “apolitical farmers like an irresponsible opposition to be derided, demonised and defeated”.

“The GoI has still not responded to the farmers’ assertion that the Delhi Police erected barricades on the route agreed upon by both the farmers and the Delhi Police for the tractor rally due to which a few of the farmers were forced to take another route. When one section of farmers hoisted their flag below the National Flag at the Red Fort, why were the police doing literally nothing to prevent this
occurrence?”, the statement asks.

The statement also hits out at the “attack by hooligans” on farmers at Singhu border in the presence of police.

“Why have barricades with concrete barriers, concertina wire, nails and spikes been raised on the borders of Delhi to prevent the agitating farmers from entering? Such barricades are not even erected on the borders of India with its neighbouring countries! Are the agitating farmers being seen as enemies of the country?” the statement says.

The statement also asks why sedition charges are being made out against “certain journalists and a Member of Parliament of an opposition party” on “flimsy grounds”, solely for tweets by them when “the factual position was not clear”.

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