In an interaction with farmers of six states on Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi targeted the Opposition for “pushing a political agenda” by “spreading myths and lies” over the new farm laws. “Some parties are pushing a political agenda by opposing the new farm laws. Some people are spreading myths and lies that land will be taken away if farmers enter into contract farming,” he said.
The interaction was part of a massive outreach programme planned by the government at a time when the talks between farmer unions and the Centre have hit a road block impasse over the farm legislations, which has drawn lakhs of farmers from neighbouring states to protest at Delhi’s borders for close to a month now.
At the virtual event, which marks the birth anniversary of former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee, PM Modi transferred over Rs 18,000 crore to more than nine crore farmers, the latest tranche of funds under the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) scheme.
Other senior leaders, including Home Minister Amit Shah and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, also took part in the BJP’s event.
Addressing farmers in Kishangarh village in Delhi, Shah said the Minimum Support Price for farmers would continue, mandis would not be closed and corporated would not snatch farmers’ land. Shah too accused the Opposition of “spreading brazen lies”.
Singh said the government had a lot of respect for the farmers protesting, and would not do anything which wasn’t in their interest. “Let the farm laws be implemented for year or so. If they are not beneficial for farmers, we will make necessary amendments,” he said.
Both Shah and Singh called for farmers to reopen the dialogue with the government.