Haryana Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala broke his silence on the farmers’ protests on Thursday, saying the Centre has accepted farmers’ demand of providing minimum support price (MSP) in writing and now the decision rests with the protesting unions.
“The farmers’ demand that the Union government must ensure MSP in writing has been fulfilled yesterday (Wednesday, December 9). Uske upar unki unions ka kya nirnaya hoga, voh toh unki movement ki baat hai (It is up to their movement to decide what is their take on the government’s proposal),” said Chautala after hosting a lunch for his cabinet colleagues at his house in Chandigarh on Thursday, The Indian Express reported. Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar too was present when Chautala was interacting with the mediapersons.
Many leaders of Dushyant’s Jannayak Janta Party, all ally in the ruling coalition, have been openly voicing their support for the farmers’ protest.
Chautala said he is “a farmer first” and it is his responsibility to ensure “farmers get adequate price for their crop”.
“The Haryana government made sure every penny of farmers’ produce goes into their bank accounts. Even Punjab has not been able to do so till date. Rajasthan could not even begin the process. We hope that when MSP comes in writing, demands that are being raised by the farmers of other states shall also get fulfilled,” he added.
On Wednesday, the Centre sent a 20-page proposal to the agitating farm unions, offering significant concessions ranging from a written assurance on continuation of MSP-based procurement and ensuring parity in transactions inside and outside existing Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) mandis. However, the farmer unions rejected the proposals.
Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar said, “We are procuring the crop on MSP in Haryana and we will always procure at MSP. We always think of farmers’ welfare. Congress, rather, ran away from the discussion in the Vidhan Sabha.”