National

Thousands of farmers reach Delhi to observe first anniversary of protests

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on November 25, 2021

Supporters of All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee participate in a protest to mark one year since the introduction of divisive farm laws and to demand the withdrawal of the Electricity Amendment Bill, at Indira Park in Hyderabad on Thursday   -  RAMAKRISHNA G

To participate in Dilli Chalo on Friday

Despite an assurance from the Centre that the three farm laws will be repealed, the Samyukt Kisan Morcha is upbeat about observing the first anniversary of the protests started at Delhi borders on November 26, 2020. Farmers from adjoining States are reaching the borders of Delhi in large numbers to participate in “Dilli Chalo” on Friday.

The SKM said in a statement on Thursday that such a long struggle continued because of the “insensitivity and arrogance” of the Centre towards toiling citizens. “Over the course of 12 months of one of the largest and longest protest movements across the world and in history, crores of people took part in the movement which spread to every state, every district and every village of India. Apart from the Government's decision and Cabinet ratification of repeal of the three anti-farmer laws, the movement achieved several victories for the farmers, common citizens and the nation at large,” the statement said.

The SKM said the movement created a sense of unified identity for the farmers, cutting across regional, religious or caste divisions. “Farmers are discovering a newfound sense of dignity and pride in their identity as Farmers, and their assertion as citizens. It has deepened the roots of democracy and secularism in India,’ it claimed.

Meanwhile, a joint meeting of the SKM and Central Trade Unions decided to take up the issues of workers strongly along with the agitation of farmers. “The platform of CTUs and SKM would carry forward the solidarity and mutual support developed during the yearlong agitation in the times to come in the interest of people and the nation,” said AITUC general secretary Amarjeet Kaur after the meeting.

Kisan Commission

Meanwhile, a platform of several organisations helping the farmers’ movement announced the formation of “Kisan Commission” to assess and report on the state of agriculture in the country. The Kisan Commission will hold public inquiry in collaboration with organisations of different types of farming across the country. The platform said commissions set up by officialdom have been buried whenever their recommendations ran counter to government and corporate interests.

“Kisan organisations have the challenge of consolidating the people-centric platform around the labour organisations, women organisations environmental groups, social movements and a variety of rights based platforms and networks of citizen groups involved with the struggles taking place around access to food and nutrition, holistic health, transformative education and safe environment, forest rights and revitalisation of rural industries and value added agricultural activities taking place at the local level,” the platform said in a release.

Published on November 25, 2021

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