The farmers protesting at the Delhi borders against the three farm laws on Saturday threatened to lead a tractor rally into Delhi on January 26 if the demands of the farmers are not met.
The government and the farmer unions are scheduled to meet on January 4 and the farmers have demanded that the farm laws be repealed and a law that guarantees the minimum support price (MSP)for procurement covering 23 crops.
In the last talks between the farmer unions and the government on December 30, the centre had agreed upon excluding farmers and to ‘decriminalise’ stubble burning for them and to drop provisions of the Electricity Amendment Bill, 2020 which intended to change the existing mode of subsidy payment to consumers.
In the press conference by the seven member coordination committee of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha, a joint front of almost 40 farmer organisations that are protesting for over a month at the Delhi borders said that the farmers shall ‘peacefully and non-violently’ lead a tractor parade into Delhi, and across the country on Republic Day celebration on January 26, in which British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is to be chief guest.
The press conference was addressed by BKU (Sidhupur) president Jagjit Singh Dallewal, Krantikari Kisan Union president Darshanpal, BKU (Rajewal) president Balbir Singh Rajewal, national president of Akhil Bharatiya Kisan Sabha Ashok Dhawale, Yogendra Yadav, president of Swaraj India and others.
Senior farm leader Darshanpal said, “If by January 26, the demands are not met by the government, then farmers protesting at Delhi’s borders shall peacefully and non-violently lead a trolley/tractor parade into Delhi. These marches shall also be held in all state and district capitals,”
The leaders announced a plan of action in their first press conference. The fame leaders said that if the talks on January 4 do not succeed then they will organise a ‘march or parade’ from Singhu border, and Shahjahanpur protesters to Delhi. They will organise tractor and trolley rallies from January 6 to 20. On Lohri which is on January 13 copies of the farm laws shall be burnt and January 18 will be celebrated as Mahila Kisan Diwas, to mark and honour the women protesters.
The birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose on January 26 will be celebrated as Azad Kisan Diwas and to mark that farmers will ‘organise protests outside official residences of Governors in all state capitals’ said farm leader Darshanpal.
Thousands of farmers who are protesting against the farm laws at Delhi borders have braved police barricades, tear gas and cold. The protesting farmers say that the new farm laws will make them vulnerable to exploitation by big corporations, erode their bargaining power and weaken the government’s procurement system.