State Cong. chief also seeks action on farmers’ demands
Punjab Congress president Navjot Singh Sidhu on Sunday wrote to Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, seeking action on farmers’ demands, including cancellation of “unfair” FIRs registered against them during their agitation.
Asserting that the Congress stood by farmers’ against the farm laws at every stage, Mr. Sidhu, however, asked the State government, “we must do more” and “not let the three black laws be implemented in Punjab at any cost.” He wrote to the Chief Minister two days after meeting representatives of 32 farm bodies which had raised their demands with him.
In a meeting with representatives of all political parties except the BJP, the farmer leaders had told them not to carry out electioneering till the Punjab polls are announced.
In a letter to the Chief Minister, Mr. Sidhu wrote, “This is to bring to your attention and request for necessary action, upon the demands raised by 32 farmer unions at the meeting called by them.” He said farmer leaders demanded “the cancellation of unjust and unfair” FIRs registered against the farmer unions due to cases of violence during the agitation in the State.”
Noting that the Congress and the State government provided support to farmers protesting against the Centre’s farm laws, Mr. Sidhu said, “Yet, some FIRs have been registered due to untoward incidences,” adding that the government could set up a mechanism to consider each case on compassionate grounds and cancel all “unfair” cases.
Referring to farmers’ fear of demand for land records by the Centre before the crop procurement, Mr. Sidhu asked the State government to fight against the Centre’s “injustice”.
“I personally believe it is unfair,” he said, adding that partition of land had not happened in many parts of the State for decades.
“This is also an attack on the resilient system of procurement by MSP through Arthiyas and to push the farmers away from APMC (Agricultural Produce Market Committees) mandis towards private markets where no such records are being demanded. Thus, I strongly feel that the Central Govt is actually creating ‘One Nation, Two Markets’ with different rules for APMC and private markets. This injustice we must fight against,” wrote Mr. Sidhu.
He stressed stressed on procurement of pulses and oilseeds through State corporations to increase farmers’ income.
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