The government is ready to put on hold the farm laws for one or one and a half year
At last Narendra Modi Government budged to farmer’s protest by offering to put on hold the controversial three farm laws for one and a half years. On the 10th round of talks on Wednesday, Agriculture and Commerce Ministers Narendra Tomar and Piyush Goyal told the farmers union leaders that the assurance of putting hold the laws for 18 months will be given as an affidavit before the Supreme Court in the ongoing cases. Though Ministers requested the farmers’ leaders to agree on the offer and withdraw the protest on January 20th itself citing that it is a pious day of Sikh Guru Guru Nanak’s Jayanti, the leaders said that they want to talk to other leaders on January 21st and come back for the 11th round of talks the next day – January 22. These developments indicate that farmers are almost in a mood to withdraw their 60-day long protest blocking the borders of the Capital Delhi.
“During discussions, we said that the government is ready to put on hold the farm laws for one or one and a half years. I’m happy that farmer unions have taken this very seriously and said that they would consider it tomorrow and convey their decision on Jan 22,” said Tomar after briefing the media after the day-long 10th round of talks with farmers leaders.
Modi Government erred in the way they bulldozed these bills as Ordinance during COVID-19 lockdown in June 2020 and passing them in September 2020 in a controversial manner, when the Rajya Sabha was in total chaos.
It must remember that on Thursday, RSS No. 2 and General Secretary of the organisation, Suresh (Bhaiyyaji) Joshi in a detailed interview with Indian Express (published on January 20) expressed displeasure on the long continuing farmers’ protest and said that there should be a patch up in a democracy. He also said that this kind of long protest is not good in a democracy. Joshi’s observations make clear that RSS wanted the government to to climb down and patch up with farmers. The RSS observations in the detailed interview must have turned as an eye-opener for the BJP led Government to climb down from the previous positions.
In the morning the government faced a setback from the Supreme Court also on the petition filed by Delhi Police to ban the tractor rally scheduled on January 26, Republic Day. Chief Justice of India-led Bench rightly asked the government/ police as to why they are asking the Court to take an executive decision and refused to pass any orders and ultimately government withdrew the petition. These incidents show that the government is losing steam and appears to be indecisive.
Name calling in poor taste
Whatever said and done it is very good that the government has climbed down from its adamant nature and offered to withhold the three controversial bills for 18 months. Actually, after Supreme Court stayed the implementation of the laws in an unprecedented way to make a patch-up with protesting farmers, this was the only way out for the government. Here we must condemn the bullies in social media who abused farmers with all names and created a volatile atmosphere. So many low lives and paid trolls hired by the ruling party BJP and paid trolls of Mukesh Ambani and Gautam Adani companies (the beneficiaries of these farms laws) went overboard and abused and called the agitating farmers names. Now, what do they have to say after the government wisely budged? These are part and parcel of democracy.
Modi Government erred in the way they bulldozed these bills as Ordinance during COVID-19 lockdown in June 2020 and passing them in September 2020 in a controversial manner, when the Rajya Sabha was in total chaos. Within weeks we have seen Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance earn more than Rs.41,000 crores by selling a 10 per cent stake to foreign companies. This has created a lot of tension in the farmers’ selling points like Mandis, which are present in Punjab and Haryana. There were objections on Central Government interfering into the Agriculture Sector, which is a State subject. The government should have drafted these bills in the traditional way of discussing with all stakeholders and tabled and sent it to the Standing Committee for threadbare discussion. That is the democratic way. Anyway, let us hope that soon the 60-day-long farmers’ protest comes to an end and talks will go on in a democratic way.