Hindustan Times ST (Jaipur)
Mamata assures farmer leaders of support to stir
KOLKATA West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday assured farmer leaders support to their agitation against the new agriculture laws after Rakesh Tikait and Yudhvir Singh met her to deliberate on issues involving agriculture, health, education and the local farmers.
At a meeting with the farmer leaders here during the day, the Trinamool Congress chief said that there should be a platform where states could converse on policy issues.
“Bulldozing states is not good for the federal structure,” she said. Banerjee’s support for the north India-based farmers’ unions comes within days of the Trinamool Congress announcing that the party would spread its footprints outside West Bengal’s geographical boundaries.
Earlier in the day, Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Tikait said, “We will urge the West Bengal government to write a letter to the Centre against the three new farm laws and if they already wrote then they should send the reminder to the government because these laws will bring loss to farmers.”
The Bhartiya Kisan Union led by Tikait and Singh had supported the ‘No vote for BJP’ campaign ahead of the West Bengal assembly elections and have plans to extend that in other upcoming state elections as well.
Banerjee announced after the meeting that her “support for the farmers’ movement will be there” and added in an obvious jibe at the Centre that “India is hungrily waiting for policies which help in fighting COVID-19, assist farmers and industry.”the chief minister rhetorically asked, “...why is it so difficult to talk to the farmers?”
She was referring to the breakdown in communication between the Centre and the farmers who have been camping at Delhi’s borders for the past one year.