A group of around 200 farmers will protest against the Centre’s three farm laws outside Parliament every day during the monsoon session, the Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) announced on Sunday. The umbrella body of over 40 farmer unions said at a press conference that two days before the session begins, a “chetavani patra (warning letter)” will be given to all opposition MPs to protest the laws inside the House.
“We will also ask the opposition MPs on July 17 to raise the issue every day inside the House while we will sit outside in protest. We will tell them not to benefit the Centre by walking out of a session. Don’t let the session run till the government addresses the issue,” farmer leader Balbir Singh Rajewal said.
Parliament’s monsoon session is set to begin on July 19.
“We will be protesting outside Parliament continuously till they hear our demands,” Rajewal said. He added that five people from each farmer union would be taken to join the protest.
The SKM also called for a nationwide protest on July 8 against rising prices of petrol, diesel and LPG cylinders.
It asked people to come out and park their vehicles along state and national highways from 10 am till 12 pm.
“Whatever vehicle you have, tractor, trolley, car, scooter, just bring it to the nearest state or national highway and park it there. But don’t create a traffic jam,” Rajewal said.
The farmer leader also appealed to people to “blow the horn of their vehicles” for eight minutes at 12 pm.
He also asked for LPG cylinders to be brought to the protest.
“I ask all the women to bring out their gas cylinders to the roads and be a part of the protest,” Rajewal said.
Responding to a question regarding Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar’s recent statement that the government was ready to hold talks with the farmers, Rajewal said they “will not talk with conditions”.
“The leaders want to talk about farm laws with conditions, we are ready to talk with them but only if they agree to repeal the laws,” Rajewal said.
On July 1, Tomar had asserted that the three central agriculture laws would bring revolutionary changes in the lives of farmers, and made it clear that the government was ready to hold talks with the protesting cultivators, except on the demand of the repeal of these laws.
Farmers have been camping at Delhi’s borders since November 2020, 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 for crops.