Farmer leader Rakesh Tikait urged farmers and their supporters gathered for the ‘Kisan Mahapanchayat’ to chant ‘Allah hu Akbar’ and Har har Mahadev’ to show solidarity. Called by Sanyukt Kisan Morcha, the mahapanchayat in Muzaffarnagar district of Uttar Pradesh witnessed a massive turnout of farmers, not just from UP, but also from adjoining states of Uttarakhand, Haryana and Punjab.
Bharatiya Kisan Union spokesperson Tikait said these chants had been previously raised together and will be raised together in future too. Attacking the ruling BJP, he said, “These people (BJP) have always worked to divide people and are responsible for riots. We will have to stop them. We will have to work constructively. We will not give our Uttar Pradesh in the hands of those responsible for riots.”
“We started our fight against the three black farm laws, the movement would have been killed on 28th January. There was a force of thousands and we were outnumbered, but we didn’t give up,” he said in his address to the crowd gathered on Sunday.
On the issue of farmers’ protest, Tikait said, “We are not going anywhere till our demands are met. We want an MSP guarantee on our farming produce. Till our demands are met, we will protest all over the country.”
“The prime minister (Narendra Modi) promised to double the income of farmers by 2022. The protest is on for almost nine months now, but the government has stopped talking to us. They didn’t even pay tribute to the hundreds of farmers who died during the protest,” said Tikait, adding that the UP government had not raised the price of sugarcane that has worsened the condition of farmers.
Backing farmers, BJP MP Varun Gandhi said there was a need to “understand the pain of farmers” on Sunday. His statement was welcomed by Rashtriya Lok Dal chief Jayant Chaudhary.
With inputs from News18