Farmers reject government's proposal for 18-month suspension of farm lawsLast updated on Jan 21, 2021, 10:52 pm
Roughly 500 farmer groups under the Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) on Thursday rejected the government's proposal to resolve the ongoing protests against the new agricultural laws.
The government had on Wednesday proposed to suspend the contentious laws for a period of 18 months.
However, the farmers stand firm on their demand for a full rollback of the laws.
Here are more details.
SKM rejects proposal; seeks full repeal
According to ANI, the SKM said on Thursday, "In a full general body meeting of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha today, the proposal put forth by the government yesterday was rejected."
The statement added, "A full repeal of the three laws and enacting legislation for remunerative MSP (Minimum Support Price) for all farmers were reiterated as the pending demands of the movement."
After yesterday's meeting with farmers, government proposed suspension
After the tenth round of talks between the central government and farmer leaders on Wednesday, the government had proposed to suspend the contentious laws for 18 months.
The government had also proposed the formation of a committee on MSPs and the laws. The government said it would implement the committee's recommendations, according to farmers.
Farmer leaders had deliberated on the proposal on Thursday.
Farmers, government to hold another meeting tomorrow
The next round of talks between the farmers and the three-member government representation—comprising Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal, and Minister of State for Commerce Som Parkash—is due to be held on Friday.
Meanwhile, farmers continue their protest on Delhi's borders and have also planned to stage a tractor rally on India's 72nd Republic Day on January 26.
Why are the farmers protesting?
For months, farmers have been protesting against the three farm laws passed in September.
The protests intensified in November-end as thousands of farmers from several states reached Delhi, camping at the city's borders.
Farmers fear that by allowing trade outside APMC mandis, the laws will weaken the mandis and they would be deprived of MSPs, leaving them vulnerable to exploitation by corporations.
SC panel to resolve protests cracks
Last week, the Supreme Court stayed the implementation of the laws and ordered a court-appointed committee to submit a report in two months.
One of the four members of the committee—Bharatiya Kisan Union National President Bhupinder Singh Mann—recused himself.
Separately, the court made the Centre withdraw a plea seeking an injunction against the tractor rally, saying the police have the power to act.