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Punjab to cancel FIRs against farmers protesting against farm law: Channi

Channi announced to call on Punjab Governor soon accompanied by a delegation of various farm representatives urging him to withdraw these cases forthwith.

SNS | Chandigarh |

Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi on Wednesday announced to cancel all the first information reports (FIRs) registered by the Punjab Police against the farmers who had been protesting against the farm laws within the state, after following the prescribed procedure with due diligence.

Chairing a high-level meeting with the representatives of 32 farm unions of Sanyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) led by Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU-Rajewal) president Balbir Singh Rajewal at Punjab Bhawan, Channi assured the representatives of SKM that he would personally take up the matter with Punjab Governor, who is also the Administrator of UT Chandigarh to withdraw the cases against the farmers who participated in the protest march towards Punjab Raj Bhawan against “draconian farm laws”.

Conceding their demand, Channi announced to call on Punjab Governor soon accompanied by a delegation of various farm representatives urging him to withdraw these cases forthwith. On the demand of farm unions, the CM said all the cases of stubble burning registered against the farmers would be sympathetically considered from the legal aspects to safeguard the interest of the farming community.

He, however, appealed to farmers to refrain from stubble burning in the future as it was hazardous both for the environment as well as human health besides hampering the fertility of the land to an enormous degree. In a relief to the cotton growers and farm labourers who suffered huge loss due to pink bollworm pest attack on cotton crops, the CM announced to enhance the compensation amount from Rs 12,000 to Rs 17,000 per acre besides 10 per cent of the relief to the farm labourers involved in the picking of cotton.

Channi sought wholehearted cooperation and support from the farm organisations to stamp out this menace which was posing a major threat to the health of human beings and underscored the need to launch a massive awareness campaign to sensitise the people on this count.

In a bid to give priority to state’s youth in the government jobs, the CM said the state government is seriously contemplating bringing a comprehensive proposal in the next Cabinet for the formulation of a policy to reserve around 75 per cent of posts in government exclusively for Punjabi youth.

Referring to the demand raised by the representatives of SKM to waive the outstanding loans of all categories of farmers including small, marginal, and landless farmers, Channi said that he would have a separate meeting with them after detailed deliberations with Finance Department regarding the state’s financial position.

Pointing out further, CM Channi said that 5.63 lakh farmers have already been benefitted from the loan waiver scheme to the tune of Rs 4610.84 Crore. Apart from these, a sum of Rs 520 Crore is being provided to landless farmers and farm workers across the state.