Reacting strongly to the IGI airport authorities sending Indian-American billionaire Darshan Singh Dhaliwal, who has been helping the cause of farmers protesting against farm laws, back to the United States after denying him entry to India, five-times Punjab CM Parkash Singh Badal on Tuesday asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to “ intervene personally and effectively” to get the injustice vacated immediately.
Badal also requested the PM to personally invite Dhaliwal as a “goodwill gesture which will send a great positive signal to NRIs (non-resident Indians)”.
Dhaliwal was not allowed to land in New Delhi on Saturday evening. Dhaliwal, who had flown in from Chicago, was allegedly told at the Delhi airport he would not be allowed to enter India, despite him carrying valid documents. He was allegedly told this was being done as a punishment for organising Langar for agitating farmers on Delhi borders.
Calling it as an affront to the “sacred practice of Langar started by the great Guru Sahiban” Badal also urged the PM to take stern action against the erring officials who “brought a bad name to the country with their action.”
Badal said organising or sponsoring a sacred socio-religious work such as ‘Langar’ has always been regarded as one of the highest and noblest duties for every devout follower of Sikhism. “Doing so for the country’s ‘annadata’ (breadwinners) is a noble task that needs to be emulated rather than penalised.”
Calling the ongoing agitation of farmers “a national movement” Badal said there was nothing wrong or illegal in helping those taking part in this civilised, peaceful, democratic movement.
Detailing his agenda for agriculture, Badal said any legislation, policy, or administrative decision affecting the destiny of farmers must be undertaken only after taking the stakeholders on board.
He said farmers must be effectively involved in decision-making processes on issues affecting their destiny. “For this, I suggest that the government should set up a statutory panel, with equal representation to representatives of farmers, agricultural experts, and farm economists for the formulation of government policy on farming and farmers,” Badal said.