Punjab CM slams Haryana counterpart over crackdown on protesting farmers

Siddhant Pandey
·2-min read

Punjab CM slams Haryana counterpart over crackdown on protesting farmers
Punjab CM slams Haryana counterpart over crackdown on protesting farmers

28 Nov 2020: Punjab CM slams Haryana counterpart over crackdown on protesting farmers

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Saturday slammed his Haryana counterpart Manohar Lal Khattar for the crackdown on farmers protesting against the Centre's three contentious agricultural laws.

Singh said that he will not answer Khattar's calls as the latter had accused him of inciting farmers in his state to gather in Delhi as part of the 'Dilli Chalo' protest.

Here are more details.

Details: 'Why are you using water cannons, teargassing them?'

In an interview with NDTV, Singh said, "Punjab is not stopping its farmers because it is their right to protest."

Singh asked, "Why are you (Khattar's government) stopping them? Why are you using water cannons and teargassing them? When we are not stopping them and Delhi is not stopping them, who are you to stop them?"

Context: Khattar had accused Singh of inciting farmers

Earlier, Khattar had held Singh responsible for the farmers' protest. Some of the protesters were witnessed throwing stones and overturning barricades as they faced a heavy-handed crackdown by the police.

Khattar had said that Haryana's farmers have stayed away from the protests, accusing Singh of provoking farmers in his state. "Office bearers of the Punjab CMO are leading the protest," Khattar had said.

Fact: Singh says he doesn't like Khattar's 'dishonest behavior'

"[Khattar] doesn't know what to say, so, he is saying all this," Singh said, "I don't like this dishonest behavior. He can call me 10 times now, I won't pick up his call." On questions about COVID-19 precautions, Singh said, "This is much bigger."

Quote: 'Despite coronavirus, farmers protest because this is much bigger'

Singh told NDTV, "Regardless of the virus, the farmers have gone to Delhi because this is beyond everything. This is much bigger."

He added, "The farmer is thinking about how he will secure food for his children. For God's sake, let's think about them. Think about what will matter to them. What's the harm in bringing some sort of clarity on this."

Protest: Thousands of farmers moved towards Delhi despite police crackdown

Thousands of farmers from several states started marching towards Delhi on Wednesday as part of their 'Dilli Chalo' protest.

Visuals showed farmers atop tractors and trucks, stocked with supplies, as they proceeded towards Delhi undeterred by barricades, teargas shelling, baton-charging, and water cannons.

On Friday, they were eventually allowed to enter Delhi and continue "peaceful protests" at the Nirankari Samagam Ground in Burari.

Farm laws: What are the farmers protesting about?

The farmers have been protesting against three controversial laws, which were passed by the Centre in September despite months of protests.

While the government has said the laws would free farmers from the clutches of middlemen, the community fears the government would stop the system of buying grain at guaranteed prices. This would leave them at the mercy of big corporates.