The ninth round of talks between the Centre and the agitating farmers, who are protesting against the three farm laws, once again failed to find common ground on Friday. The next meeting is scheduled on January 19.
For over 1 month, thousands of farmers have been protesting at various borders near the national capital demanding the repeal of the three farm laws and a legal guarantee for a Minimum Support Price (MSP) on crops. The government on the other hand remains adamant on their stance and has repeatedly refused their demands, leading to the nine rounds of talks.
During the meeting, along with cases against farmers in Karnal following the incident before Haryana CM, the farmers also raised concern regarding the alleged police crackdown against those directly or indirectly supporting farmers’ protest. They reiterated that the government has been “harassing” the people who are involved in the agitation.
“The government is bent on harassing the people involved in the movement, instead of listening to the demand of the farmers. The social workers who are sending buses to Delhi or providing financial help to the martyred farmers are being harassed repeatedly in the name of the investigation by the NIA – National Investigation Agency. We oppose this mental abuse and we warn the central government to create a good environment for the discussions with farmers,” Samyukta Kisan Morcha, the united front of 40 farm unions, said in a statement after the meeting.
Meanwhile, Union minister Narendra Singh Tomar said that it’s the farmers who are stuck and not moving forward to break the deadlock.
“I did not want to say it but the farmers have been telling media persons that we are firm on farm laws but we have accepted most of your demands but the farmers are stuck on their stand. Farmers are not even taking a step forward,” he said.
On January 12, the three contentious farm laws were put on hold by the Supreme Court and a four-member committee was formed to resolve the issues.