Khaira, MLAs urge people of Punjab and leaders of all political parties to join the farmers protest at Delhi on 26th – 27th November
Chandigarh, November 24: Addressing the media here at Chandigarh today, Sukhpal Singh Khaira MLA and former Leader of Opposition flanked by Jagdev Singh Kamalu MLA Maur and Pirmal Singh Khalsa MLA Bhadaur made a fervent appeal to all political parties of Punjab, to lower their flags and join the farmers protest slated for 26th and 27th November at New Delhi. Khaira also urged all sections of people of Punjab to support the cause of farmers because Punjab cannot survive without a flourishing agrarian economy.
Khaira and MLAs said they were saddened by the anti-Punjab and anti-farmers attitude of the BJP government for failing to respect the sentiments of Punjabis and farmers. Khaira said it was the farmers of Punjab who introduced green revolution to eradicate hunger of the country and to make India self sufficient in food production. Khaira said by doing so they may have served the cause of their country but in the process they have ruined the soil, groundwater and the environment of the state besides being heavily indebted leading them to suicides since couple of decades. Khaira said their consistent effort to produce wheat and paddy have contaminated the soil through heavy doses of fertilisers and insecticides leading to widespread cancer and other water borne diseases due to contaminated subsoil water. Khaira said instead of rewarding the brave farmers of Punjab who not only contributed towards food grain production but also fought for the independence of the country and have continuously sacrificed their lives in the defence forces too, the BJP government is hell bent to further add to their woes through its anti farmer policies.
Khaira said although the farmers of India and Punjab should have demanded implementation of the Swaminathan committee report recommendations gathering dust in the offices of Delhi for the last one decade but they are merely demanding continuation of the MSP regime that has landed them in critical economic crisis. Khaira said the intention of the BJP government to introduce large corporate houses in the agriculture sector will further destroy the already wrecked agrarian economy of Punjab.
Khaira said the free market idea being propagated by the BJP government has already failed miserably in the western world many decades ago. Khaira said that all developed countries across the world have heavily subsidised agriculture to make it economically viable but unfortunately our government is on a disastrous path to snatch the livelihood of 65% people living in rural India. Khaira said it was extremely hurtful that instead of accepting the legitimate demands of the agitating farmers, the BJP government is on the contrary derailing their peaceful struggle by preventing supply of coal, fertilisers etc. to Punjab. Khaira and the MLAs urged the BJP government to accept the fair demands of the farmers, as they have now vacated all the railway tracks of the state for plying of passenger trains also.
Khaira said the BJP government was treating Punjab as an enemy state by robbing its legitimate share of GST, RDF and other dues that the people of Punjab have contributed towards the central pool.
Khaira and the MLAs appealed to the BJP government to open the India – Pakistan border at Amritsar for trade, as Punjab and the neighbouring states can never make tangible progress unless they have access to a very huge central Asian market through the said border. Khaira said Punjab was a landlocked state and it has no port therefore it is highly impossible for the industry as well as agriculture to compete with the rest of the country given their geographical position. Khaira said that the old trade route towards central Asia has vast markets not only for agriculture but also the industrial products of Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh.
Khaira said the farmers agitation during the last couple of months has been totally peaceful and not a single person or any public property has been damaged but the adamant attitude of the BJP government is virtually forcing Punjab towards anarchy that could lead to violent events in the state, for which the BJP government at the Centre would be squarely responsible.