Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) chief Sukhbir Singh Badal on Monday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to talk to farmers protesting the Centre’s farm laws to resolve their issues and said there is no scope for “egos” in a democracy.
He accused the Centre of trying to break up the agitation by tiring out the farmers who have been camping at Delhi borders since November last year.
Badal also appealed to the rank and file of the SAD to hoist black flags atop their houses on May 26 to express solidarity with the farmers.
The agitating farmers will observe a ”black day” on May 26 to mark the completion of six months of their protest.
Badal was in Adampur, Punjab, to inaugurate a 25-bed Covid care centre started by the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee at the Guru Nanak Sangat Hospital in Kalra village. The facility is also equipped with oxygen concentrators.
He requested Modi to talk to the farmers immediately to resolve all their grievances and said there is no scope for “egos” in a democracy.
Only “dictatorships adopted an intransigent attitude towards people”, he added.
The farmers have been demanding that the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, Farmers’ (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020 be rolled back and a new law made to guarantee minimum support price (MSP) for crops.
In a statement, Badal said instead of listening to the farmers, the central government “broke” talks with them and is trying its best to break up the agitation by tiring them out.
“I want to state unequivocally that the SAD is a representative party of the farmers and the poor and will always stand up to support them. I urge party workers to hoist black flags on their houses on May 26 to demand justice for the farming community,” the SAD chief said.
On Friday, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM), an umbrella body of over 40 farmer unions spearheading the protest against the farm laws, had written to Modi seeking the resumption of talks.
Several rounds of talks between farmers and the government in the past have failed to break the deadlock over the legislations. PTI