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By not having informal conversations with farmers, the barricades are a matter of local administration: Take | India News

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NEW DELHI: Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said Wednesday that the Center is not having any informal talks with protesting farmers, describing the lifting of more barricades and the suspension of the Internet in and around the sites of agitation as public order issues related to local administrations.
The last and eleventh round of meetings between the government and 41 protest unions, held on January 22, were inconclusive. The Center had asked the unions to reconsider the government’s proposal to suspend the new farm laws for 18 months.
When asked when the government will hold the next round of talks and if it was engaging with unions informally, Tomar responded in the negative.
“No. We will inform when the formal talks will take place,” Tomar told PTI.
When told that the protesting unions are demanding that formal talks with the government cannot be held until the police and administration stop “harassing” them and release the detained farmers, the minister said: “You should speak to the Commissioner of Police. I want to comment on the issue of law and order. That is not my job. ”
Since the talks on January 22, there has been no meeting between peasant leaders and the Center to discuss agricultural laws, although the government reiterated that its offer is open for discussion.
On Tuesday, Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), the body that groups together farmers’ unions protesting against central farm laws, had said that there can be no “formal” talks with the government until “harassment” of different kinds occurs. against farmers. The movement of the police and administration is “stopped immediately”.
The SKM had also said that it had not received any formal proposals for the talks.
“Although the government did not present a formal proposal for the talks, we clearly state that the talks will take place only after the unconditional release of farmers who are in illegal police custody,” SKM said in a statement.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, at an art meeting on Saturday, had said that the government’s offer to suspend farm laws for 18 months was still on the table and that the agriculture minister was just a phone call away to move forward. the conversations.
The sites of the farmers’ protest on Delhi’s borders have been turned into fortresses with the police tightening security and erecting multi-layered barricades to stop the movement of vehicles. Concertina wires and metal spikes have also been placed to keep people walking away.
The reinforced security measures come after violence during the Republic Day tractor parade by farmers.

Times of India

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