Updated: December 24, 2020 12:27:45 pm
Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Ghulam Nabi Azad met President Ram Nath Kovind on Thursday and sought withdrawal of the recently-enacted farm laws. Gandhi said he told the President the laws were “anti-farmer” as they would make them suffer huge losses. He said the Opposition stands with the farmers who have been camping at Delhi’s borders for over a month now demanding repeal of the legislations.
Earlier, Gandhi had attempted to lead a delegation of Congress leaders to the Rashtrapati Bhavan but was stopped by the Delhi Police. Several leaders including general secretaries Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and K C Venugopal, and senior leader Randeep Singh Surjewala, were detained.
The delegation, comprising leaders in both Houses of Parliament and senior party members, was hoping to submit a petition signed by nearly 2 crore farmers and farm labourers from across the country.
Priyanka said it was the government’s duty to listen to the farmers. “They will have to take the responsibility. They are answerable to the people of India. A resolution can come only when they listen,” she told reporters.
Venugopal called the police action a “violation” of rights, and said the party “must be allowed to voice (our) concerns as the principle Opposition”.
It begins! Congress workers and leaders marching towards Rashtrapati Bhavan. pic.twitter.com/ONwi0Rhcp9
— Saral Patel (@SaralPatel) December 24, 2020
The Congress, which has accused the government of passing the “anti-farmer” legislations in an “undemocratic fashion”, launched its signature campaign against the farm laws in September. The party had asked its state units to collect signatures from farmers and Agriculture Produce Market Committee traders.
A video posted by the party on Twitter this morning showed an assembly of leaders at the Congress headquarters ahead of the march. Pictures of trucks loaded with boxes of signed petitions were also shared.
Congress delegation led by Shri @RahulGandhi, Leaders of the Party in Lok Sabha & Rajya Sabha, Senior Party members & MPs assemble to meet the Hon’ble President of India at Rashtrapati Bhawan shortly. pic.twitter.com/zvfbkmDvxl
— Congress (@INCIndia) December 24, 2020
“Today is a big day in the fight for farmers’ justice… Those who feed will win, and arrogant Modi will lose,” Surjewala tweeted.
Watch: Congress delegation led by Shri @RahulGandhi, Leaders of the Party in Lok Sabha & Rajya Sabha, Senior Party members & MPs assemble to meet the Hon’ble President of India at Rashtrapati Bhawan shortly. pic.twitter.com/32fJBHjE2Q
— All India Mahila Congress (@MahilaCongress) December 24, 2020
“Congress party leaders led by Rahul Gandhi ji are taking the struggle of farmers today to the Hon’ble President of India seeking his intervention to annul the anti-farmer laws. An appeal signed by around 2 crore farmers and farm labourers from across the nation would be submitted,” Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said.
Lakhs of farmers are camping at Delhi’s borders, demanding a repeal of the three contentious laws.
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