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Farmer turmoil: talks between Amit Shah and farmer leaders fail to make a breakthrough


Talks between Interior Minister Amit Shah and a select group of farmers’ representatives failed to achieve any breakthrough Tuesday night, with union leaders insisting on their demand for repeal of three new laws and rejecting the proposed government amendment.

Some leaders also threatened to boycott the sixth round of talks scheduled with the government on Wednesday at Vigyan Bhawan here, while others said their next course of action will hinge on amendments the government secures in writing, which they claimed was promised by Shah. at today’s meeting.

Another leader said: “There is no possibility of meeting tomorrow. Regardless of what you have decided to put in writing, we will not accept those amendments, as we want the complete repeal of the laws. It is not a question of meeting again. “However, some leaders who attended the meeting with Shah seemed to be in favor of the necessary amendments and guarantees on the minimum support price (MSP) regime and the mandi system instead of a complete repeal of the laws enacted in September, indicating some kind of divisions between the unions.

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After the meeting that ended around midnight, All India Secretary General Kisan Sabha and CPI (M) Leader Hannan Mollah said: “The Interior Minister has made it clear that the government will not repeal the laws. Shah-ji said the government will deliver the amendments the government wants in writing tomorrow. We will decide on attending the meeting after discussing the written amendments with the 40 farmers’ unions. “At the same time, he also added:” We do not want amendments, we want repeal of laws. There is no middle way. We will not attend tomorrow’s meeting. “.

Mollah said the final decision on attending the sixth round of talks will be made at a meeting of union leaders at noon on Wednesday at the Singhu border, where thousands of farmers have been camping for the past 12 days demanding the repeal of the laws.

After the fifth round of talks on Saturday, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar had said that the next meeting was scheduled for 11 a.m. on December 9.

Tomar, Food Minister Piyush Goyal and State Minister for Trade and Industry Som Parkash, who have been leading the government’s consultations with agitated farmers, were present at Shah’s meeting with the 13 farmer leaders at the National Complex. of Agricultural Sciences, Pusa.

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Peasant leaders have asserted that the laws will benefit businesses and end the mandi system and the minimum support price (MSP) regime.

The government has maintained that it is committed to the well-being of farmers and has presented these laws as major reforms for their benefits.

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