Tribune News Service
New Delhi, November 30
The Bharatiya Janata Party-led central government has conveyed its willingness to hold unconditional talks with farmers, sources in the party said on Monday—a development that comes a day after farmers rejected Centre’s qualified offer to advance talks.
Some leaders from farmers unions also confirmed the development.
Centre’s willingness to soften its stand comes in the back of an ongoing meeting that Home Minister Amit Shah’s holding with senior leaders of his party, the BJP, at his residence. Among the several BJP leaders present at the meeting is Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Tomar.
Sources also said that some leaders from farmers’ unions were in touch with BJP leaders, and that they had agreed to more talks with the central government. This assent to hold more parley comes after a promise from Shah to hold unconditional talks with farmers.
They have also been allowed to continue their protest at their current location on Delhi’s borders. Sources said they could be invited for talks as soon as Tuesday, sources said.
The development comes as farmers continued to hold protests at Delhi’s borders for the fourth day over the controversial agriculture reforms that Parliament had passed in September.
Farmers mainly from Punjab have been holding protests spearheaded by 32 farmers’ unions since, and earlier this month, announced a march to Delhi called ‘Delhi Chalo’. Amit Shah had issued a statement two days ago that his government was scheduled to hold talks with farmers on December 3, but that those talks could be advanced if protesters cleared roads and moved to a site the Centre had designated for them—a ground at Delhi’s Burari.
Protesters however rejected the offer, opting to stay where they were and asking for unconditional talks.