Farm laws to be repealed on Monday, SKM defers Parliament march
Farmer leaders on Saturday decided to suspend the November 29 tractor march to Parliament and hold a meeting next month to decide the future course of action.
The decision of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body of farmer unions protesting against the farm laws for the past one year, comes two days ahead of the commencement of the Winter Session of Parliament, during which a bill to repeal three central farm laws is slated to be introduced.
Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar had on Saturday also urged the farmers protesting at Delhi’s borders to return home, and said that there is “no point” continuing the agitation after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the decision to repeal the laws.
The minister also confirmed that the Bill to repeal the laws would be tabled on the first day of the Winter Session of Parliament on Monday.
“After the announcement of the repeal of the three farm laws, there is no point in continuing the farmers’ agitation. I urge farmers to end their agitation and go home,” Tomar said.
SKM leader Darshan Pal told a press conference on Saturday: “We are suspending the Parliament march on Monday. We had written to the prime minister for withdrawal of cases against farmers, allotment of land for building a memorial for farmers who lost their lives (during the protest), suspension of Ajay Mishra ‘Teni’ from the Union Cabinet over the Lakhimpur Kheri violence, along with other issues.”
He added that a reply is awaited and SKM will hold another meeting on December 4.
In a televised address on November 19, Modi had announced that the three contentious farm laws would be repealed, and a committee comprising of farmers, agricultural scientists, government representatives, state governments, and agricultural economists, set up to ensure decisions on issues related to agriculture be “effective and transparent”.
Thousands of farmers descended on the national capital last week to mark the one-year anniversary of the agitation on Friday.
While celebrating the decision to repeal the farm laws, the farmers said that they would continue their protest for a guarantee of fair Minimum Support Price (MSP) and the withdrawal of cases against them, among other things.
Tomar reiterated that the committee set up by the government would look into farmers’ demand for a fair MSP, and state governments would decide on the cases registered against protesters.
“With the constitution of this committee, farmers’ demand on MSP stands fulfilled,” Tomar said.
“As far as cases registered during the protest are concerned, it comes under the jurisdiction of state governments and they will take a decision. State governments will decide on the issue of compensation too, as per their state policy,” Tomar added.
(With inputs from agencies)