NEW DELHI: For the first time, ex-servicemen will join hands with Dalit organisations and the All India Kisan Sabha on August 9 to protest against the NDA government at the Centre, seeking redressal of their grievances.
The Indian Ex-servicemen Movement (IESM), which has in the past fought for ‘one-rank one-pension’, rues that the government ignored many of their demands.
“Whatever Prime Minister Narendra Modi had promised us on ‘One rank One pension’ has not been delivered. He lied to us. Earlier, we fought separately. Now, we will fight unitedly with farmers’ organisations and Dalits,” Priyadarshi Chowdhury, coordinator for IESM, told PTI.
The All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS), the farmers’ organisation of the CPI(M), has given a call for ‘jail bharo’ across the country on August 9, demanding action on the agrarian crisis. “This is the first time ex-servicemen will join a protest called by a Left organisation. We have come together to put forward our demands,” AIKS General Secretary Hannan Mollah said.
Though AIKS, Dalit organisations and the ex-servicemen have separate sets of demands, the three organisations will band together to protest the growing incidents of hate crime and lynching.
They are also expected to demand the passage of the Women Reservation Bill in the Lok Sabha and scrapping of Aadhaar, which they feel has “wreaked havoc” on welfare schemes.
The AIKS has been pressing for fixing the minimum support price for all crops at 1.5 times the input cost, guaranteed procurement, one-time waiver of all loans of farmers and land to landless farmers. Chowdhary said that their demands are – “complete OROP as per approved definition of Parliament, pay parity and cancellation of the Cantonment Roads order”.