Centre, farmers to hold 10th round of talks even as protests enter 56th day

Apart from revoking the farm laws, the farmers are demanding a legal guarantee for the procurement of crops at Minimum Support Price (MSP) but the government says it is ready to bring about amendments in these laws.

The tenth round of talks between protesting farmers and the Centre would be held today even as the protests on the Delhi borders continued for the 56th day on Wednesday.

The ninth round of talks between farmers demanding revocation of the three farm laws and the centre held on January 15 had ended with no progress towards ending the stalemate.

Apart from revoking the farm laws, the farmers are demanding a legal guarantee for the procurement of crops at Minimum Support Price (MSP) but the government says it is ready to bring about amendments in these laws.

Over 40 representatives of farmer organisations present in the previous rounds of talks would meet with three Union Ministers at 2 pm at the Vigyan Bhavan. The meeting was earlier scheduled to be held on January 19 but was postponed by a day.

Kirpa Singh, a farmer leader from Punjab said that farmer leaders would first like to deliberate on their core demand for the repeal of the three laws during the latest talks.

Harinder Singh Lakhowal, Punjab-based farmer leader and Bhartiya Kisan Union (Lakhowal) General Secretary said, “In the previous talks, we urged the Union government to discuss the MSP issue. We will again discuss it in this meeting as well.”

He also said that the issue of “harassment” of those supporting the farmers’ agitation by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) would again be brought up in Wednesday’s meeting.

He also asserted that all farmer unions and others spearheading the farmers’ movement were united and would continue the agitation till their demands were not accepted.

As for Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar’s remark that the farmer unions should discuss the new farm laws clause-wise, farmer leaders said that much discussion has been done on this issue for many days and they would rather like to discuss their core demand on the repeal of the laws.

The farmers are demanding the repeal of The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020; and The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act 2020, and law on procurement of crops at MSP.

The farmers have been sitting on Delhi’s borders since November 26, 2020.

(With IANS inputs)




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