The present impasse in farmers’ protest and an unusual unreasonable intransigence by self-acclaimed sclerotic farmers’ unions towards mediation efforts by the government smacks of a deeper conspiracy at play.
It is clear from various surveys that the bulk of farmers’ communities across the length and width of the country have lauded the new farm laws singularly aimed at liberating the small-scale famers from the stranglehold of mandis and middlemen, who have, for decades, hijacked and exploited the farmers on ground, resulting in their deprivation and depression and manifesting in several agonising suicides by the farmers. The new farm laws came as a huge shot in the arm to navigate the nation through the farming morass festering for decades for want of proactive action by successive dispensations.
Sadly, the bold step of the government has been sought to be demonised and weaponized by a subterranean nexus of forces with established links to foreign entities, including China. During the prolonged protest, various spin-offs have been peddled by self-serving caravan of activists, communists and propagandists with help of poorly fragmented media space to denigrate demean and divide the indigenous business entities.
This particular dimension of demonising business entities needs to be examined with juxtaposition to Chinese interests and influence in the machinery that is fuelling and funnelling the resources to keep the famers’ flames on. It’s an open secret in the post-pandemic world that Chinese buccaneers across the globe have come under security scanner and policy opprobrium of governments with many amongst the developed/developing nations such as India, US, Canada, UK, Australia and Japan resorting to regulatory interventions to preclude ingress of Chinese equipment and investments, the principal casualty being the 5G equipment and technology suppliers from China.
India has been on the forefront of banning Chinese applications and investments in Indian market, thereby delivering a potent blow to the business and sentimental prospects of Chinese entities, setting the stage for actions by other nations much to Chinese umbrage.
A close scrutiny and plumbing of Chinese and trans-national links to farmers’ curious imbroglio, throws up macro and micro level machinations at their behest to push back the landmark reforms of the government. There are evident symptoms inviting accurate prognosis of continued furtive attempts by external forces with Chinese footprint to derail the country from the path of reforms and cause confusion and chaos by creating dissent in the mainstream stakeholder of the country, the farming population and division and cynicism against the key industry players at the receiving end of perception-based prejudices.
Germane to the ongoing developments is the planned rollout of 5G technologies, in a subliminal yet befitting message and riposte to CCP about growing Indian technological heft. Clearly, this has huge economic and geo-political implications for China that has been harbouring covert interests towards establishing Chinese hegemony through surveillance networks enabled by telecom manufacturers owing subservience and allegiance to dragon.
There is little denying the desperation of CCP to derail the momentous rollout by
Indian industry in what would also be a clear messaging to the world about growing Indian clout in niche technologies and viability of India as an alternate reliable partner in the post pandemic global alignment.
There is another grapevine by vested menagerie of proxies and the ever obliging army of fifth columnists alleging involvement of corporates in orchestration of protests to serve as a red herring paving way for peaceful rollout of 5G. This is again malicious propaganda to demean the reputation of Indian industry at behest of Chinese with a specific aim to scuttle 5G revolution in India. Clearly, the propagandists firing over the shoulders of the venerable farmers have sought to create a gallimaufry of facts and fiction in a desperate move towards the ulterior objectives. The game-plan clearly seems to explore various options to weaken the social economic and political fabric of the country using the complicit opposition forces and so called ideological adversaries flogging the same farmers for decades without a scintilla of compassion and care.
Another dimension to the ongoing farmers’ protests is the established presence of an oiled logistics infrastructure to sustain the campaign as per pre-meditated gameplan. Protests of a genuine and benign nature typically gather momentum through crowd-sourcing of public opinion and contributions much like the Anna Hazare anti-corruption blitzkrieg during Congress regime. Clearly, the larger public opinion and national sentiment is gradually and consciously gravitating to the good intent of new farming legislation with many public voices urging the farmers for maturity and restraint in building common ground with government without being held hostage by vested forces that have vitiated the ongoing environment of trust and credibility of both sides.
The author is advisor, cyber security & counter terrorism (West Asia & Middle East). Views expressed are personal