New Delhi: Hailing ‘Atmanirbhar (self reliant) farmers, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said that Indian crop growers proffered record agricultural produce during times of coronavirus. He further said that the farmers are the backbone of our country’s democracy.
“Farmers have been behind the progress of the country. They also played important role in the Chauri Chaura struggle. In the last six years, steps have been taken to make farmers self-reliant. As a result of this, agriculture sector has grown even during the pandemic,” PM Modi said.
PM Modi on Thursday held a video conferencing to celebrate 100-years of ‘Chauri Chaura’ that filled British Raj with the fear of brave and fearless Indian freedom fighters. The historical incident took place in the Gorakhpur district of Uttar Pradesh on February 4, 1922, when a crowd of the Non-Cooperation Movement clashed with Police personnel who opened fire.
The protestors in retaliation set fire to the Chauri Chaura police post in which 23 police personnel were killed. The killing of the cops led to arrests of numerous demonstrators with 228 put on trial, 172 of them ordered to be executed, while six of them died during the trial and others were sentenced to long-term imprisonments. Accompanied by Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath, Modi also released a postage stamp to mark 100 years of the episode.
Calling attention to government’s measures for farmers’ growth, Modi said, “We have taken several steps in the interest of farmers. To make mandis profitable for farmers, 1,000 more mandis will be linked to e-NAM.”
PM Modi’s statement comes as tens of thousands farmers have been protesting at Delhi borders, under harsh weather conditions, demanding scrapping of Centre’s three farm laws; Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, which they apprehend will leave the farmers at the mercy of big corporates.
However, the ruling government has maintained that the new laws will bring better opportunities to the farmers and will introduce new technologies in agriculture sector. Till now, Eleven rounds of formal talks have taken place between the government and the protesting farmer unions, which have so far been inconclusive.
Meanwhile, farmers are adamant to have these laws repealed, the government has offered to keep these laws on hold for 18 months while a special committee appointed by the Supreme Court looks into the matter.