Farmer bodies would be forced to resume their agitation if the Centre does not fulfill the promises it had made in December, the Samyukt Kisan Morcha said on Monday.
In a statement, the umbrella body of farmers’ unions said that they observed Monday as a “day of betrayal” to protest against the Centre not fulfilling the promises. Farmers held demonstration at several places and submitted to district authorities memoranda addressed to President Ram Nath Kovind.
Three farm laws were withdrawn by Parliament on November 29 after more than a year of protests by farmer unions.
However, farmer leaders had said that they will continue their protest till their other demands are met. These included a legal guarantee on minimum support price on crops, withdrawal of cases lodged against the protestors during the farm law agitation and suspension of minister Ajay Mishra from the Union Cabinet, among others.
The Centre had then sent draft proposals on the farmers’ demand. After some deliberations, the farmers on December 9 accepted the proposal and decided to call of the agitation against the farm laws.
In their memoranda submitted on Monday, the Samyukt Kisan Morcha said that it was the president’s “constitutional obligation” to protect the interests of farmers and “warn the government against committing this fraud”.
“Due to the tireless efforts of the farmers, despite the lockdown and the economic slowdown, the agricultural production of the country has increased continuously,” the memorandum stated. “Playing tricks with farmers can be disastrous for the whole country.”
Since November 2020, thousands of farmers had been holding sit-in demonstrations at the borders of the national Capital. The agitation had begun with the demand of repeal of the three farm laws passed in Parliament in September 2020.
The farmers were concerned about the new laws, which would have opened up the country’s agriculture markets to private companies. The Centre, however, had claimed that the laws would give farmers more access to markets and boost production through private investment.
After more than a year of protests, on the occasion of Guru Parab on November 19, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced that the laws will be repealed. Parliament then repealed the laws on November 29.