Amarinder urges Centre to resolve farmers’ issue, says nothing in his hand

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh

New Delhi, (Samajweekly) With the farmers’ protests escalating day-by-day, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Thursday said ‘there was nothing for him to resolve’. He urged the Centre, which is holding discussions with the farmer representatives, to the resolve issue quickly.

Singh’s statement comes after he discussed the farmers’ issue with Union Home Minister Amit Shah at his residence in about half-an-hour meeting. The meeting happened before the fourth round of talks between the Central government and over 34 farmer union leaders started at the Vigyan Bhawan around 12.30 p.m.

The Punjab Chief Minister told reporters after the meeting that he requested Shah to “resolve the issue as it was adversely impacting the state’s economy and also posed a serious danger to the national security”.

Reiterating Punjab’s position seeking early resolution of the deadlock, Singh also urged Shah to “rethink its stand on the legislations while appealing to the farmers to find an early solution to the problem”.

“The problem needs to be solved quickly,” the Punjab Chief Minister stressed during the crucial meeting with Shah.

In a brief interaction with the media, Singh said “While he and his government were not involved in the mediation in any way, and the matter had to be resolved between the Centre and the farmers and an early resolution was vital in the interest of both Punjab and the country”.

Stressing the need to protect the Minimum Support Price (MSP) and continue with the APMC based Mandi system, the Chief Minister urged Shah to listen to the farmers with an “open mind” to resolve the standoff quickly so that the farmers from Punjab and other states, including a large number of women, can return to their homes.

A solution has to be found at the earliest, Singh said, adding that he had come to meet the Union Home Minister to reiterate Punjab’s stand on the “imbroglio” between the farmers and the Central government, as well as the need to secure the future of the farming community and agriculture.

Singh met Shah as the ongoing farmers protest entered eighth straight day on Thursday with thousands of farmers huddled at Delhi’s different borders since November 26 demanding to repeal three farm laws enacted in September during the Monsoon Session of Parliament.