NEW DELHI/BHATINDA: Farmers’ unions agitating for repeal of the central agri laws may continue to publicly resist presence of politicians at their platform but they are now looking for their support to take the protest forward at a time when the chances of resuming talks with the Centre appear quite bleak and they need to keep up the spirits of their supporters.
News of Delhi Police’s investigation against farm leaders since the Red Fort violence on R-Day has sent the agitation’s leadership searching for a new plan. Discouraging news from the Chilla and Ghazipur borders on Wednesday night, of cane charge and disconnection of power supply, has increased the anxiety at Singhu and Tikri camps.
Confronting the taint of being called “anti-nationals”, the frontline unionists face the challenge of lifting the protesters’ morale to keep the stir going.
The circumstances had changed and the new plan must be more calculated, with marches ruled out, farm leaders said. The talks option, however, would be difficult unless unions consider forgoing the repeal demand.
Though unions, barring those linked to the Left, are weighing their words at this juncture, there are some who want to explore the option of consultations at the political level while broaching the idea of a joint parliamentary committee to probe the Red Fort incident.
“The movement can no longer be apolitical. After all, the demands are political in character where MPs will have to step in either to repeal the laws or to enact one to give legal guarantee to purchase at MSP,” P Krishna Prasad, secretary of Left-aligned All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS), said.
AIKS is represented in the talks by its leader and ex-CPM Lok Sabha MP Hannan Mollah. The entire process of talks, however, has taken a peculiar turn where most leaders who have been part of the negotiations will now have to join the police probe on the violence issue as they have been named in the FIRs.
Sensing the undercurrent of differences in opinion, the national working group of AIKSCC, which represents around 500 farmers’ bodies, on Thursday issued a statement appealing to all farm leaders “to unite and not give in to desperate diversionary and divisive attempts.”