Union Minister Nitin Gadkari
Union Minister Nitin Gadkari

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari on Tuesday said that he doesn’t think social activist Anna Hazare will join the farmers’ agitation. He also said that the government has not done anything against the farmers by bringing the three farm laws.

“I don’t think Anna Hazare ji will join. We have not done anything against the farmers. It is the right of farmers to sell their produce in mandi, to traders or anywhere else,” Gadkari told news agency ANI.

He said poor farmers are committing suicides. "I come from Vidarbha. Over 10,000 farmers committed suicide. It should not be politicised. Those suggestions by farmers, farmers organisations which are correct we are ready to make those changes," he added.

Gadkari also said that dialogue is the only way to find a solution to protest by farmer unions and a break in talks can lead to miscommunication.

“If there is no dialogue, it can lead to miscommunication, to controversy and sparring. If there is a dialogue then issues will be resolved, the whole thing will end, farmers will get justice, they will get relief. We are working in the interest of farmers,” Gadkari said.

Anna Hazare on Monday wrote to Union agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar warning "resumption of a hunger strike" against the Centre's "failure" to fulfil his demands including the implementation of the recommendations made by M S Swaminathan Commission. Hazare's other demand include granting autonomy to the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP).

The anti-graft activist had sat on a fast in his Ralegaon Siddhi village in Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra in February last year over his demands. He called off the fast on February 5, 2019, after receiving a written assurance from then Union agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh that the Centre would form a high- powered committee to discuss the suggestions made by the Swaminathan Commission and other agriculture-related demands.

Farmers are protesting on the borders of Delhi demanding the repeal of three farm laws enacted recently by the government. They have been on protest since November 26.

They have rejected the proposals of the government concerning changes in the farm laws and have held five rounds of talks with the Centre besides attending a meeting called by Home Minister Amit Shah.

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