Singhu Border, 24 November (Sangrami Lehar Bureao)- The Union Cabinet meeting today is reported to have given its go-ahead for a Bill to be introduced and enacted in the upcoming winter session of the Parliament, to repeal the 3 anti-farmer laws brought in by the Modi Government last year. While the Government’s decision to repeal the laws was announced by Mr Narendra Modi on November 19th, the formal procedure for the Cabinet to give a green signal to the Bill was adopted today. Meanwhile, it is also noted that the Parliament’s Bulletin related to 26 Bills listed for legislative business in the Winter Session consists of Electricity Amendments Bill 2021 also. It also consists of Indian Maritime Fisheries Bill 2021 – fishers are also farmers as per India’s National Policy for Farmers 2007. Fishworkers’ unions have been voicing their apprehensions and concerns about this Bill and Samyukt Kisan Morcha has highlighted this issue in a press release earlier (dated 28th July 2021). SKM has earlier written to the Prime Minister of India about its intention to continue with the agitation until pending demands are met by the Government.
Ajay Mishra Teni was kept out of inauguration events organised by local sugar mills in Lakhimpur Kheri, keeping in mind farmers’ sentiments and the ultimatum issued by Samyukt Kisan Morcha leaders. It is ironic that the Prime Minister of India is not able to act in a morally responsible manner in this matter, however. Ajay Mishra Teni continues to be in the Union Government’s Council of Ministers despite being the sutradhaar of the Lakhimpur Kheri farmers’ massacre. It is reported that the re-constituted SIT visited Lakhimpur Kheri yesterday. SKM has already expressed its reservations and concerns about the inclusion of IPS official Padmaja Chauhan into the SIT by the Supreme Court of India, and hopes that this issue will be addressed soon. Meanwhile, a Shaheed Kisan Asthi Kalash Yatra is going through different districts of Madhya Pradesh, and local farmers are congregating in large numbers to pay their homage to the martyrs.
Today, Sir Chhotu Ram’s birth anniversary was celebrated with enthusiasm and respect in the morcha sites and elsewhere as Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Diwas. He is well known for his work on raising peasant consciousness and uniting them across religious and caste boundaries in the early 20th century. After winning in provincial elections and becoming a Revenue Minister, Sir Chhotu Ram brought in statutory changes to stop usury, to restore land to the tillers and to free up farmers from indebtedness. Samyukt Kisan Morcha pays its deep respects to Sir Chhotu Ram and the inspirational legacy that he left behind.
A market survey taken up by a media house shows that a majority of NDA supporters also want MSP to be legally guaranteed. On the other hand, official data from the recent 77th Round of NSO’s Situation Assessment Survey of Agricultural Households show that a vast majority of farmers have not got MSP. This context reinforces the demand for legally-guaranteed MSP by this farmers’ movement.
In Karnataka, to mark the first anniversary of the farm protests on November 26th, farmers have decided to come onto the streets, especially important highways in large numbers on that day. Protests are planned in approximately 25 locations spanning all districts of the state. Two of the protest locations for this highway jam will have people from Bangalore also joining in vehicle rallies at Srirangapatna and Chadalapura in Chikballapur district. In Tamil Nadu, rallies will be held in all district headquarters jointly with trade unions. There will be protest demonstration and meeting in Chennai also. Tractor rallies are being planned into several state capitals like Raipur and Ranchi. The Raipur rally will leave from Gariaband on 25th November morning. In Kolkata in West Bengal, protest events are being organised both on 25th and 26th. In Hyderabad in Telangana, a Maha Dharna will be organised tomorrow, on November 25th at Dharna Chowk near Indira Park. In Patna, the farm unions and trade unions will hold a joint march to the collectorate and submit a memorandum. Meanwhile, thousands of farmers are arriving at the morcha sites around Delhi with tractors and ration and other supplies.
SKM pays its humble homage to martyr Shri Sukhdev Singh Chakkiwala, who has been continuously rendering his sewa in the kisan andolan by cooking and feeding protesting farmers at Bhavdeen toll plaza, who sacrificed his life in this movement.
Samyukt Kisan Morcha points out that it is the utter failure of the BJP government at the Centre for the shortage of fertilisers being experienced by farmers in different parts of the country, for the black-marketing that is being done and for the extra prices that farmers are having to desperately shell out. SKM condemns the statements by Agriculture and Fertilisers’ Ministers that there is no shortage!
It is now reported that at least 80 fake social media accounts are being operated in a networked manner, that too in the names of Sikhs. These fake accounts have been discovered to be promoting divisive narratives and were targeting Sikhs. These accounts have now been suspended across social media channels like twitter, facebook and instagram. Samyukt Kisan Morcha is concerned about the divisive agenda being promoted in this manner, and asks citizens to be extra alert about this virtual strategy to pit citizens against each other. The BJP and its supporters have not hesitated to use various strategies to attack the peaceful movement, even as the government went out of its way to suspend and stop the accounts of supporters of the protesting farmers.