Farmers stick to tractor rally plan on R-Day, SC to hear Govt plea today

Our Bureau/Agencies New Delhi | Updated on January 17, 2021

Farmers protesting, at Ghazipur border in New Delhi   -  Manvender Vashist

The farmers protesting against the three agriculture reform laws showed no signs of going back on their decision to take out a tractor rally on the Republic Day on the Ring Road even as the Government maintained its stance with the Agriculture Minister Narender Singh Tomar saying “anything but repeal of the laws can be considered”, and a member of the Supreme Court-appointed expert committee recused himself.

PTI reported that the Supreme Court may take up the pleas relating to the three farm laws on Monday in the context of the recusal of Bhupinder Singh Mann from the four-member panel set up to resolve the impasse.

Police plea

Agencies said the top court would also hear the plea of the central government, filed though the Delhi Police, seeking an injunction against the proposed tractor rally or any other kind of protest by farmers which seeks to disrupt the gathering and celebrations of Republic Day on January 26.

Meanwhile, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha held a meeting and came up with an elaborate programme to fill the entire 47-kilometre stretch of the Ring Road, around Delhi, with tractors and warned the Centre not to put hurdles before farmers as they do not have any intention to “attack” anyone. It said lakhs of people will participate in the “Kisan Rally” on January 26. The next round of discussion between the farmers and the Centre is on Tuesday. The farmer leaders said they will not seek any permission from the Delhi Police to hold the rally, but said the press conference was held to intimate the public about the rally.

Meanwhile, Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar told ANI on Sunday that the government is ready to amend the laws. “The farmer unions are not budging from their stance, they are constantly asking to repeal the laws. When the government enacts the law, it is for the whole country. Most of the farmers, scholars, scientists, and people working in the agriculture sector agree with these laws,” he stated.

Shetkari Sanghatana president Anil Ghanwat, agri-economists Ashok Gulati and Pramod Kumar Joshi are members of the panel. “We are meeting on January 19 at the Pusa campus.," Ghanwat told PTI. “One of the four members has backed out of the committee. If the apex court does not appoint a new member, the existing members will continue,” he said.

Published on January 17, 2021

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