New Delhi: A day after the Rajya Sabha passed the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bills, the Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) on Monday (September 21, 2020) announced to stage a nationwide protest against the new farm Bills on September 25.
States like Punjab and Haryana have already witnessed protests that started taking place since the Bills were introduced in Lok Sabha on September 14, 2020, by Union Minister of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare Narendra Singh Tomar.
Earlier in the day, BKU held protests across the district headquarters in Uttar Pradesh and while addressing the protest at the Muzaffarnagar District Magistrate office, the National Spokesperson of BKU, Ch Rakesh Tikait said that the government has become an autocrat. He stated that it was the first time that such ‘unfortunate’ incident has happened in the history of country’s Parliament, where neither any discussion took place, nor the MPs were allowed to question while passing the agricultural Bills.
“It is a dark day in the chapter of democracy in India,” said Tikait.
“If the MPs of the country don’t have the right to ask questions, then why is PM Modi wasting Rs 900 crore of the public’s income for the construction of the new Parliament amid the COVID-19 pandemic,” added Tikait.
He alleged that the Centre government under the shadow of these Bills wants to take away the right of MSP of farmers.
“Till there is no agreement, the farmers of the entire country will remain on the roads,” said Tikait.
Notably, the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee has also announced to hold a country-wide protest on September 25 and as many as 10 central trade union have extended their support saying the BJP government should stop anti-farmers measures.
As per PTI news agency, the ten trade unions are NTUC, AITUC, HMS, CITU, AIUTUC, TUCC, SEWA, AICCTU, LPF and UTUC.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the proposed agriculture reform bills will empower the farmers to freely trade their produce anywhere, adding that these Bills are not against the agriculture Mandis.
The Prime Minister termed the bills as “historic” and said that they would usher in much-needed reforms in India’s agricultural sector, while flaying the Opposition that some people were worried that control would slip out of their hands and trying to mislead the farmers on the issue of Minimum Support Price (MSP).
In another important development, eight opposition MPs including TMC’s Derek O’Brien, AAP’s Sanjay Singh, and CPI(M)’s KK Ragesh were suspended from Rajya Sabha on Monday by Chairman Venkaiah Naidu for their unruly behaviour during the passage of farm bills in the Upper House on Sunday.
These MPs have been suspended for the remaining part of the Monsoon Session of Rajya Sabha.