Farmer Union Leaders Begin Day Long Hunger Strike Against Farm Laws

New Delhi: After the ‘Bharat Bandh’ call earlier this month, the protesting farmer leaders have begun the day-long hunger strike on Monday at the Delhi borders against the newly formed Farm laws. The hunger strike will continue from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The farmer unions have also called for protests at all district headquarters across the country to fulfill their demand and repeal the new farm laws.

As the farmers’ agitation on Monday entered the 19th day, Harinder Singh Lakhowal, General Secretary of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) said that with the hunger strike, the union leaders want to “wake up the government.”

Bharatiya Kisan Union’s (BKU) national spokesperson Rakesh Tikait said: “The hunger strike would be carried out tomorrow till 5 p.m. but the farmers will have to take care that no disturbing element comes in our movement”.

Opening a way to begin government-farmers talk, the farm leader, meanwhile, said “if the government sends us any proposal, we would carry out discussion and take a decision on the same”.

Sarva Hind Rashtriya Kisan Mahasangh’s Shivkumar Kakka, however, clarified that that farmers are still adamant on the issue that they will not end the ongoing protest till the government repeal the three laws.

He also accused the government of obstructing the way farmers’ coming to Delhi, saying “our trolleys are being stopped at Morena and other cities of Madhya Pradesh”.

Stressing that the whole agitation is still being run under ‘Sanyukt Kisan Morcha’ banner, the leader said all the associations are working here and no one has left. “All the decisions taken here are not by majority but maturity and unanimity.”

Giving detail about one farmer leader Bhanu Pratap, who has approached Supreme Court and is about to end the protest, the farmer leaders here at Singhu said he was not “our part and he has no relation with this movement”.

Doab Kisan Samiti leader Jagbir Singh also accused the government of stopping farmers’ trolleys coming from Uttarakhand. He said that crowd was swelling up each day at Ghazipur border on Delhi-Uttar Pradesh border– the third major front of farmers’ protest where farmers have blocked National Highway 24.

“The more they (the government) will try to suppress, the more we will accumulate,” said Jagbir Singh, adding “the government says farmers are our brothers but they are doing nothing for us”.

Punjab Kisan Union leader Ruldu Singh said it is a movement of the people of India because their business would get destroyed completely because of these laws. “We want to save the middlemen…”

The farmers continued their 18th day protest on Sunday seeking government to fulfill their first and major demand to roll back the three laws — The Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020; and The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.

The agitation is on as five rounds of talks between the government and the farmers so far remained inconclusive. Farmers are demanding the repeal of three farm laws calling “black laws” and “anti-farmer” but the government is not ready for a rollback. As per the government, it is ready to carry out amendments to the laws but these cannot be repealed, as “they are for the benefit of farmers”.

(with inputs from IANS)

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