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Farmers’ Protest: 10th round of talks with Govt today, security beefed up on borders

By Saima Siddiqui 
Updated Date

New Delhi: Delayed by a day, the 10th round of negotiation talks between the Centre and farmers’ union is finally to be held today at 2 pm over the three contentious farm laws at Vigyan Bhavan. This meeting is deemed important as a deadlock came between the government and farmers, where the centre ruled out repealing the contentious agricultural laws while the agitating farmer leaders are adamant to fight till death stating their ‘ghar waapsi’ will happen only after ‘law waapsi’.

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Meanwhile, protest of farmers’ organizations on the borders of the national capital, Delhi, continues but it could reportedly become massive as agitating farmers have announced to take out a huge tractor rally in their protest against three farm laws on Republic day, January 26, on Delhi-Haryana boarder. In view of this, heavy security has been deployed to Delhi’s borders.

So far, total nine rounds of talks have taken place between the farmers and the government, but all have remained inconclusive. Last talk held with Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar on January 15, was also not decisive. Where farmers’ side isn’t willing to back down from their demands and seek the repealing of these three ‘anti-farmer’ laws, centre too seems adamant on its decision of not scraping these laws.

To resolve the issue with talks, the central government has urged the farmers to come to a middle ground with talks instead of only insisting on its repeal. The government also said that both sides want to resolve the deadlock as soon as possible, but it is delayed due to the involvement of people of different ideology.

To note, thousands of farmers have been camping against the agricultural laws of the Modi government at Delhi’s borders for the past few months. The Supreme Court had earlier stayed the contentious three agricultural laws and formed a committee to look into the grievances of the farmers.

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This meeting between farmers and government was to be held on January 20, but was deferred at the last minute for today. Apart from this, there is also an important hearing in the Supreme Court today, in which the court will hold its hearing on the issue of farmers’ tractor rally.

Furthermore, the top court on January 18, adjourned the Centre’s petition filed through the Delhi Police, seeking an injunction against the farmers’ tractor rally that is scheduled for Republic Day. However, the three-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Sharad Arvind Bobde, said that cops are at liberty to invoke all powers under the law and have all the power to deal with law and order situations. “Who should be allowed and the number of people to enter are all matters of law and order to be decided by the police. We are not the first authority,” stated Chief Justice Bobde.

The ‘Republic Day tractor rally’ was planned by the agitating farmers, in protest of centre’s new farm laws, to build pressure on the central government against the implementation of what the farmers call ‘anti-farm’ laws. Farmer leaders, however, clarified that the tractor rally on January 26 will only take place at the Haryana-Delhi borders and that they are not planning to reach the Red Fort to disrupt the Republic Day parade as is being claimed by some.

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