Bhartiya Kisan Union(BKU) national president Bhupinder Singh Mann who was of the committee named by Supreme Court to look into the farm laws steeped down on Thursday saying he did not wish to ‘compromise farmers’ interests.’
The decision has come a day ahead of the next round of talks between the farmer unions and government. The matter will now go back to the apex court for further orders.
BKU president Mann released a statement that read: “As a farmer myself and a Union leader, in view of the prevailing sentiments and apprehensions amongst farm unions and the public in general, I am ready to sacrifice any position offered or given to me so as not to compromise the interests of Punjab and farmers of the country.”
Mann who heads his own faction of the BKU, was a part of the four member panel formed by the Supreme Court order on Tuesday that was to begin a dialogue with the protesting farmers and the government and to suggest a solution to the ongoing farmers protest on the borders of the national capital.
The farmers had rejected this committee, as the members of the panel were in support of the farm laws. The protesting famers see this resignation as a ‘small victory’.
The apex court committee included Dr Parmod Kumar Joshi, an agricultural economist who is also the Director for South Asia, International Food Policy Research Institute, Anil Ghanwat, the chief of Shetkari Sanghatana who has supported the farm laws, Ashok Gulati, agricultural economist and former chairman of the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices and Bhartiya Kisan Union(BKU) national president Bhupinder Singh Mann.
The 81-year old was an independent member of the Rajya Sabha and has supported Congress in the 2012, 2017 Vidhan Sabha polls and in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls in Punjab and favours the farm laws passed by the Centre.
The farmers protest that has entered its 50 day, with famers protesting around Delhi borders. The farmers want the government to repeal all the three farm laws as they feel that leaves them vulnerable to the big cooperations and they loose their price bargaining ability.