India / Punjab CM holds sit-in protest at Khatkar Kalan against Farm Bills

Zoom News : Sep 28, 2020, 02:20 PM
Chandigarh: Punjab chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh held a sit-in protest against the farm laws at Khatkar Kalan in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar. He also paid tribute to Bhagat Singh on the latter’s birth anniversary and said we were indebted to his “supreme sacrifice”. Khatkar Kalan is the ancestral village of the freedom fighter.

The three farm bills - The Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Service Act, 2020 and The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020 - have been passed by Parliament and received the assent of President Ram Nath Kovind on Sunday.

Punjab has become the epicentre of the protests against the three laws linked to agriculture sector amid widespread protests. Amarinder Singh is the first chief minster in the country who has participated in an agitation to express his discontent against the centre.

Today, as he made a rare public appearance amid the pandemic, he told reporters: "ISI (Pakistan's intelligence agency) is always looks for potential recruits. My government has been in power for three years; around 150 terrorists have been arrested and 700 weapons have been seized. Punjab had been quiet for some time... now they (central government) did this (passed the farm laws). If you snatch food from somebody, won't they be angry? They become a target for ISI."

Captain Amarinder Singh said that most farmers in Punjab were marginal and they will be severely impacted by these legislations.

“I along with my colleagues from @INCPunjab held a protest against Centre’s Anti-Farmer Laws at Khatkar Kalan in SBS Nagar. Most of our farmers are small & marginal who will be severely impacted by these legislations. We stand by Punjab’s farmers & will do everything to oppose it,” Singh tweeted.

Questioned about his comments on an incident in Delhi this morning, where a tractor was burnt in the heart of the national capital near the iconic India Gate, Captain Amarinder Singh backed the protesters, saying: "If it's my tractor and I want to burn it... what is their problem?"

The Punjab Chief Minister held a sit-in at the ancestral village of freedom fighter Shaheed Bhagat Singh - Khatkar Kalan. 

On Sunday, he said his government will see if Punjab can amend state laws to protect farmers from any fallout of the three controversial laws. "We are already consulting with legal and agricultural experts, and all those impacted by the central government's calamitous legislations, to decide on the future course of action," Amarinder Singh said in a statement.

While critics say  farmers will lose bargaining powers with the entry of private players into the agricultural sector and they won't get a minimum support price for their produce, the government has said the new laws will help small and marginal farmers.