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Farmers’ Protest: Deviated from its path?

Sanidhya Garg

BySanidhya Garg

Mar 19, 2021

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The farmers’ protest has crossed the 200-day mark, making it one of the largest protests to gather such mass reach and coverage. It has connected people in various ways. But how many of us have wondered why there is no resolution to these protests? Is it because of the ‘fascist’ nature the Modi government? Or is it the farmers who do not want to cooperate? Let’s have a look, what the government, the farmers, and the farmers’ union are doing.

In the beginning, the farmers’ protest had people’s complete support who stood with them in solidarity. The government held several meetings with Farmer Unions which all went in vain. The basic concern of farmers was regarding the removal of MSP, a point that the center was ready to include, however, a common ground couldn’t be obtained. There were allegations that several demands have been made such as to release several people arrested under UAPA. Some of them included Vara Vara Rao who was one of the founders of the Maoist organization declared illegal under the UPA govt. He was arrested for 2018 Bhima Koregaon violence. If this happens to be true, there is no sense that these demands be made under the aegis of Farmers’ Protest.

In the protest, several comments were made which jeopardized the farmer’s protest. For instance Yograj Singh’s cheap comments on Hindu women for which no action was taken. Several comments on our former PM Mrs. Indira Gandhi and current PM Mr. Narendra Modi were made. Some section of farmers made several vague demands and posters were raised like no vaccines, no testing for COVID-19. ONLY HUGS AND NO MASKS. no Cashless economy. How do all these demands concern farmers? 

Also, several doubts were raised regarding the infiltration of farmer protests by separatist groups, which have been proved to be quite true if we see the pictures where people can be seen wearing Bhrindanwale’s t-shirt, holding the posters and banners of a pro-Khalistani group. Red fort violence was that spark, because of which farmer protest lost its momentum and respect in the eye of the people. The disrespect of national fag and raising of Nishaan Sahib turned up to be another blunder. At the onset of this, the famous toolkit incident happened which was affiliated with Poetic Justice Foundation (a pro-Khalistani organisation) which talked about not only portraying India in a bad light on our Republic Day but also talked about disrupting Chai’s and Yoga’s image at the global level. However, they do not realize the employment that tea plantation provides and empowers women. The toolkit incident also led to Disha Ravi’s arrest. There were several questions about her age and she being misled. But crime does not have an age I guess, because Nirbhaya’s rapist was 17 yrs old and Kasab was 25.

The real face of these protests has become clear, when Tikait and other farmer union heads have gone to West Bengal to ask people not to vote for BJP. This clearly shows that this has all been about a political stunt. They have also planned to visit other states where Assembly Elections have been annouced.

Thus, it is very clear, that farmer protest did not talk much about farmers but had the political propaganda and everything else, apart from things which farmers are concerned about. Even Raghuram Rajan, former RBI Governor has praised these laws and Geeta Gopinath current Chief Economic Advisor has also said that it shall help in increasing the wages of farmers. Some people showed hypocrisy by calling her a Bhakt because she favored the laws but were happy with her when she advised Kerala’s CPI party.

The need of the time is to address the gaps in the Farm law while ensure the law and order situation is not disturbed anywhere. Unneccesary political intervention, lawlessness, and violence will only undermine the essence of this protest.