Tribune News Service
New Delhi, January 8
While after the January 4 talks, it is more or less clear the government has ceded all it intends to persuade farmers to end the agitation, speculations are it may “offer/ propose the choice of implementation of the three contentious laws on the states, giving them the power/freedom to enforce them”.
However, farmer leaders say that after what Punjab BJP leaders said after their meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah — that “Maoists have infiltrated the movement, the Prime Minister knows best and farmers should listen to him, it is clear the government has not understood the gravity of the situation” — it is not about which party is in power in which state, it is about farmers,” they say.
Ahead of the eighth round of talks with the Union Ministers, BKU leader Rakesh Tikait has already said the government can try as much as it wants, farmers will not go back home till the three Acts were repealed.
“The government still has time till tomorrow. It can make a law on MSP and take back the three laws and fulfil demands of the agitation. The tractor march was a trailer. The full movie will be shown on January 26 (Republic Day when farmers have planned a tractor parade)” he said.
“We are again reminding the government ahead of tomorrow’s meeting that these laws should be completely repealed and remunerative MSP should be made into a legal right of all farmers. We will never accept the amendments offered by the government, and towards fulfilling our demands, we will continue to intensify the protests,” Dr Darshan Pal of the Samyukta Kisan Morcha said, making the unions’ stance clear at the meeting.
But while farmers threaten escalation, it seems the government, too, is prepared for a long haul.
Sources say the government has already relented on the proposed Power Act, the Ordinance on stubble pollution and offered amendments to the three Acts.
“They (farmers) should tell us something new, we are ready to discuss the three Acts clause by clause,” they say.