BJP is selling farmers' rights to corporate houses through farm laws: TMC
Kolkata, Dec 04: The Trinamool Congress on Friday expressed its ire against the "draconian" farm bills, which it alleged were passed without consultation with stakeholders, and accused the BJP of selling farmers' rights to corporate houses.
A TMC delegation will soon meet the agitating farmers in Haryana, party sources said. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, while referring to her 26-day hunger strike against "forcible" land acquisition in Singur in 2006, expressed her solidarity with the farmers protesting the new farm laws.
The TMC supremo was then an opposition leader during the Left Front rule in the state. She tweeted, "14 years ago on 4 Dec 2006, I began my 26-day hunger strike in Kolkata demanding that agricultural land cannot be forcefully acquired. I express my solidarity with all farmers who are protesting against draconian farm bills passed without consultation by Centre #StandWithFarmers."
Banerjee had on Thursday threatened to launch a country-wide agitation if the "anti-farmer" new farm laws were not withdrawn. Senior TMC MP Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar alleged that the new farm laws are "unconstitutional" and were passed to help the corporate houses.
"We demand that these laws be withdrawn. These laws were passed not to help the farmers but were done to help the multinational and corporate houses. The intention of the BJP is to sacrifice the interest of the farmers to serve its own interest," she told reporters.
She also said that the TMC will launch a country-wide movement if the farm laws were not withdrawn. Marathon talks between the Centre and the agitating farmer unions on Thursday failed to end the standoff over the new farm laws as the protestors refused to budge on their demands and another round of discussions will be held later in a bid to forge a resolution.
The government side, led by Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, assured the group of nearly 40 farmer leaders that all their valid concerns would be discussed and considered with an open mind, but the other side stuck to their demand of repealing the three "hastily-passed" farm laws, saying there were several loopholes and deficiencies.
Agitating farmers had on Wednesday demanded that the Centre convene a special session of Parliament and repeal the new farm laws as they threatened to block other roads in Delhi and "take more steps" if it failed to do so.