NCP chief Sharad Pawar
NCP chief Sharad Pawar
File Photo

NCP chief Sharad Pawar on Sunday asked the Centre to take serious cognisance of the ongoing farmers' protest and said if the situation is not resolved soon, we will see farmers from across the country joining them.

Talking to reporters in Mumbai, Pawar said when the farmers are protesting on streets, it should be taken seriously. "But, unfortunately, that is not happening."

"I hope wisdom dawns on the government and it takes cognisance to resolve the issue. If this stalemate continues, the protest will not be limited to Delhi, but people from nook and corner of the country will stand by the protestingfarmers," he said.

"Farmers from Punjab and Haryana are the main producers of wheat and paddy, and they are protesting. If the situation is not resolved soon, we will see farmers from across the country joining them," he added.

He also questioned the government on the manner the bills were passed.

"When Bill was being passed, we had requested government that they should not be in a hurry, it should be sent to Select Committee and a discussion is needed, but that didn`t happen and the Bill was passed in haste. Now the government is facing problems because of that haste," Pawar said.

The farmers are protesting against the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020; Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; and The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act 2020.

Enacted in September, the three farm laws have been projected by the government as major reforms in the agriculture sector that will remove the middlemen and allow farmers to sell anywhere in the country.

Thousands of farmers are protesting at various border points of Delhi for over a week against the new farm laws. They have also called for a 'Bharat Bandh' on December 8.

Talks between the government and protesting farmers remained inconclusive on Saturday even as union leaders stuck to their demand for the repeal of the new farm laws.

But, the protesting farmers have expressed apprehension that the new laws would pave the way for eliminating the safety cushion of Minimum Support Price and do away with the mandis, leaving them at the "mercy" of big corporates.

The Centre has repeatedly asserted that these mechanisms will remain.

(With agencies)

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Free Press Journal