Chandigarh, Sep 21 (PTI) The Haryana Congress held protests across the state on Monday against Parliament's nod to the contentious farm bills, which the party described as 'black laws'.
State Congress chief Kumari Selja led the protest in Jind, while former chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda addressed the protesters in Sonipat. Senior leaders Ajay Singh Yadav and Kuldeep Bishnoi joined the protest in Rewari and Hisar districts, respectively.
Congress workers raised slogans against the BJP-led central government for bringing the “anti-farmers” bills and claimed that the BJp-JJP government in Haryana was silent and not raising voice for farmers.
Congress workers, who staged a protest at the district headquarters here, submitted a memorandum addressed to the President through deputy commissioners.
Hooda said the Congress has sought a special session of the Haryana Assembly to discuss the “impact and ramifications” of the farm bills. He said the party will also move a resolution against these bills.
Congress MLA Varun Chaudhary, who sat on a protest in Ambala City, termed the bills a move to ruin the lives of farmers, who are already facing hardships.
Through the memorandum, he said, the party sought the President's intervention in the matter and asked him not to sign the bills.
The Farmer's Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020, and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020 were passed by the Rajya Sabha on Sunday with a voice vote, amid unprecedented unruly scenes by protesting opposition members demanding that the proposed legislations be referred to a House panel for greater scrutiny.
The two bills have already been passed by the Lok Sabha and will now go to the president for his assent before they are notified as laws.
Addressing the protesters in Jind, the party's state unit chief said the “anti-farmer” move of the Union government will “destroy the peasants”.
'BJP is pro-capitalists, it does not understand the pain of the poor and the farmers. They hurriedly pushed through these bills. They even did not care to listen to the suggestion of the opposition members that bills should be referred to the select committee, which could have then taken a view of farmers, farm-labourers, Arhitiyas (commission agents),” Selja said.
Hitting out at the BJP, Selja said 'they accuse the Congress and opposition parties of misleading the farmers whereas the entire country can see the pain of farmers”.
'When Congress-led UPA was in power, we used to listen to the voice of farmers, we understood their pain. For us, the rights of farmers, poor, weaker section were above all. But now, interests of only big corporates are being watched,” she charged while addressing the gathering in Jind.
She alleged that under the present system, “big companies will exploit the farmers. Also, in case of any dispute, can ordinary farmers take on big corporates, how will a small farmer fight the legal battle?”.
Selja said the Congress-led government in neighbouring Punjab raised its voice against these bills but the BJP-JJP coalition in Haryana is silent. 'The state government has adopted silence. They are not raising voice in favour of farmers,' she said.
Referring to 'lathi-charge' on farmers during a protest against the farm ordinances in Kurukshetra's Pipli on September 10, Selja said, “The ruling dispensation can book the farmers for attempt to murder, lathicharge them but it cannot raise the peasants' voice before the prime minister.
'Haryana Chief Minister M L Khattar should have raised the voice of farmers before the prime minister but he does not have the courage to do so. Deputy Chief Minister (Dushyant Chautala), who used to do politics in farmers' name, too is not raising voice because hanging on to power is more dear to him now,” she alleged.
Selja also accused the BJP of neglecting Jind, which is considered as the political heartland of the state.
She said the Congress will raise voice in favour of farmers from streets to Parliament.
'These bills are completely against the farmers, labourers and Arhitiyas (Commission agents),' as per the party memorandum. PTI SUN VSD DPB