Mainstream

Home > Archives (2006 on) > 2020 > Farmers Need To Seen and Heard in The Capital - Letter to the Prime (...)

Mainstream, VOL LVIII No 50, New Delhi, November 28, 2020

Farmers Need To Seen and Heard in The Capital - Letter to the Prime Minister of India | INSAF

Saturday 28 November 2020

INDIAN SOCIAL ACTION FORUM (INSAF)
A124/6, 1st floor, Katwaria Sarai, New Delhi 110 016 Tel: +91-11-40582589 Email:insafdelhi[at]gmail.com; insaf[at]vsnl.com Website: http://www.insafindia.com

November 27th, 2020

Shri Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India

Dear Shri Narendra Modi ji,

Farmers have been marching towards Delhi from different states of India, including Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh, determined to get their concerns on the new farm bills heard and resolute that they will stay in our cold and polluted capital till the rollback is done.

These farmers have had to face obstacle after obstacle placed in their way by Haryana and Uttar Pradesh governments, and possibly the central government in an attempt to use every possible means to stop them – numerous barricades, heavy container and sand-laden trucks in multiple layers, barbed wire fences, huge boulders across the roads, water canons, tear gas and amazingly even deep trenches dug up on our highways and roads. All of this done to stop citizens who toil with the soil and bring food to our plates from peacefully approaching the central government and the capital city with their grievances! As you know, North India is in the throes of a bitter winter and if our toiling and usually patient farmers have felt compelled to brave the cold and an arduous journey to speak their mind on the farm bills in the national capital, it is even more apparent to all that safe passage and a free and fair hearing is their inviolable right.

Despite the blockades and hardships, thousands of farmers have managed to reach the borders of the capital region of the country, and many others led by various national and regional platforms of farmers organisations, loosely coordinated by the Samyukt Kisan Morcha are persisting with moving forward on their Dilli Chalo program.

The voices of farmers and agricultural labourers have been ignored, their concerns not taken into account when framing the ordinances or passing them as Acts in Parliament. Representations given to you and your government on the issue multiple times in agitations by farmers and their organisations across India are yet to receive replies. This has brought about a desperate situation and now it falls upon the nation, and the Government of India in particular, to ensure that farmers must necessarily be heard and that no untoward incident occurs in this escalating tension and unfortunate stand-off between our food producers and the government.

We call upon the government of India to stop its confrontationist attitude of denying this most vital and large section of our society an opportunity to be heard and demand that sincere dialogue be immediately initiated with our Annadaatas. It seems completely meaningless for the government to offer talks and not create an atmosphere conducive for such talks to take place.

We, therefore, write to you to urge you to:

  • Ensure that the farmers have a free and safe passage into Delhi without creating a situation where any untoward incident is justified later on, as having been necessitated.
  • Allot the protesting farmers a space like Ramlila Maidan where they can gather and hold talks with the government.
  • Call the all-India/regional platforms of farmers for sincere discussions with senior ministers of your cabinet on their just demands to repeal the three Farm Acts and the Electricity Bill 2020.

Sincerely,
The President and Office Bearers INSAF

Notice: The print edition of Mainstream Weekly is now discontinued & only an online edition is appearing. No subscriptions are being accepted