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Opposition parties support Bharat Bandh by farmers’ unions; Protests in various states | India News


NEW DELHI / KOLKATA / CHENNAI: Several opposition parties announced on Saturday their support for the ‘Bharat Bandh’ convened on December 8 by farmers’ unions against the new agricultural marketing laws and held protests in various parts of the country to express their solidarity with the agitators who have remained on the borders of Delhi for 10 days.
“It will be an emphatic Bharat Bandh on December 8,” India Kisan Federation President Prem Singh Bhangu said on Saturday night after the fifth round of talks between farmers and the central government failed to break the deadlock. .
The RJD, the Trinamool Congress and left-wing parties, as well as a joint platform of ten central unions, announced their support for the national strike, while DMK leader MK Stalin led the protests in Tamil Nadu.
Congress asked the prime minister not to test the patience of farmers.
“Pick your pen, apologize to ‘anndata’ and annul the black laws immediately,” party spokesman Randeep Singh Surjewala tweeted with the hashtag of ‘December 8 Bharat Bandh’.
The ruling TMC in West Bengal said it has decided to extend its “moral support” to the December 8 national strike and would organize sit-ins in various areas for three days.
TMC MP Sudip Bandopadhyay said that his party, during its protest programs in Bengal, will seek the immediate withdrawal of the agricultural laws and that the new bills are sent to the standing committee or the select committee of Parliament after due deliberations. with all stakeholders.
“Our leader CM Mamata Banerjee has promised unconditional support to the farmers movement. We demand the immediate withdrawal of agricultural laws,” he said in Kolkata.
The Communist Party of India (Marxist), the Communist Party of India, the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist), the Revolutionary Socialist Party and the All India Forward Bloc made the announcement in a joint statement.
“Left parties extend their solidarity and support to the ongoing mass agitation by Kisan organizations across the country against the new agricultural laws. Left parties extend their support for the call they made for a Bharat Bandh on December 8 “. the statement said.
DMK Chairman MK Stalin and top party leaders held protests in different parts of Tamil Nadu in support of the agitated farmers and urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to hold talks with them.
Stalin, leader of the opposition in the Tamil Nadu Assembly, led a demonstration in Salem.
The head of DMK questioned the “rush” to pass the laws during the COVID-19 pandemic and asked if the legislation had provisions for the exemption of farm loans, subsidy for fertilizers and minimum guarantee of employment for farm workers.
“None of these. That is why farmers are opposed to these and we are as well,” he said.
“The protests must continue until the three laws are withdrawn. The prime minister must invite the farmers and hold talks with them,” he added.
The BJP should immediately convene Parliament and repeal the laws. “Until then, the DMK will support this protest,” Stalin said.
In Patna, opposition parties led by RJD’s Tejashwi Yadav were allowed to hold a brief protest against the new farm laws at the Mahatma Gandhi statue on Gandhi Maidan, where they pledged to support agitators farmers.
“I am with the Anndata (food providers) in their fight against the Dhandata (people who possess wealth).
“Is it a crime to speak out in support of farmers who demand a minimum support price (MSP) in the newly enacted laws? If it is a crime, we will always commit that crime,” Tejashwi said in a tweet.
The Communist Party of India (Marxist Leninist Liberation) said it had organized “roadblocks” in Bihar during the day to protest against agricultural laws, said its secretary of state Kunal.
The Jammu and Kashmir unit of Congress organized a protest in Jammu.
Bharatiya Kisan Union activists held demonstrations in many places in Haryana and burned the effigies of the Union government.
The joint forum of trade unions that has supported the farmers’ movement includes the National Trade Union Congress of India (INTUC), the All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC), Hind Mazdoor Sabha (HMS), the Trade Union Center of India (CITU), All India United Trade Union Center (AIUTUC) and Trade Union Coordination Center (TUCC).
Several former Punjab athletes, including award-winning Padma Shri and Arjuna, went to Delhi to return their awards to President Ram Nath Kovind in support of the farmers’ protest.
“If we don’t have time to meet the president, we will place our awards outside Rashtrapati Bhavan on Sunday,” said former hockey player Rajbir Kaur.
Other former athletes heading to the national capital are Gurmail Singh, Olympic hockey award winner Dhyan Chand, Hardeep Singh, Arjuna’s Kabaddi player, and Tara Singh, Arjuna’s award-winning weightlifter.
The Center’s offer to amend the contentious laws failed to cut the ice with farmer groups who insisted that they respond “yes or no” to their key demand to repeal the legislation during the fifth round of talks on Saturday.
The Center had now called a meeting on December 9.
Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, after the meeting, renewed his call on farmers to put an end to the uproar and assured them that the Modi government remains committed to the interests of farmers.
He called on the farmers’ unions to send the elderly, women and children back to their homes after the protest due to the cold weather.
Enacted in September, the three farm laws have been projected by the government as major reforms in the agricultural sector that will cut out middlemen and allow farmers to sell anywhere in the country.
However, protesting farmers have expressed their fear that the new laws would pave the way to remove the Minimum Livelihood Price safety cushion and wipe out the mandis, leaving them at the mercy of large corporations. The Center has repeatedly stated that these mechanisms will continue.

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