Prime Minister Narendra Modi is not habitual of giving morning addresses to the nation. Be it demonetization, imposition of nationwide curfew, and Covid-19 updates, all these addresses had happened at the dusk. When there was an announcement that he will address the nation at 9 am on Friday - November 19, on the occasion of Guru Nanak Jayanti, it was expected that something big is going to come and it has indeed become big. During his televised address, he had thrown an unexpected ball by announcing that the three farm laws will be withdrawn.
Yes, you read it right. The contentious farm laws that were staunchly backed by the BJP and its affiliates are now going to be withdrawn by the BJP government headed by Narendra Modi. The Prime Minister assured that the farm laws will be withdrawn as soon as Parliament meets for the budget session. In his address, Narendra Modi had defended the farm laws as an attempt to help small farmers sell their produce wherever they wished to by liberalizing agricultural produce marketing.
He said, "The decision was taken with a pure heart. Yet, there must have been some shortcoming in our devotion. This isn't a day to blame anyone. I am announcing that all three farm laws will be repealed by the government by the end of the month when Parliament meets, using all constitutional measures for the same." "I appeal to all my farmer brothers to go back home and to farming on this auspicious day", he added. The Prime Minister had also revolved around his work on the welfare of farmers, as Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, and three other states are going to host crucial assembly polls next year.
He said, "When I became Prime Minister in 2014, we prioritised farmers' welfare & development... Many people are unaware of the truth that 80/100 are small scale farmers who have less than 2 hectares of land and are over 10 crores in population. This piece of land is their survival." "To ensure that farmers get the right amount for their hard work, many steps were taken. We strengthened the rural infrastructure market. We not only increased MSP but also set up record govt procurement centres. Procurement by our govt broke the record of past several decades", he added.
Narendra Modi has highlighted that whatever he did, he did for farmers. He said, "Whatever I did, I did for farmers. What I'm doing, is for the country. With your blessings, I never left out anything in my hard work. Today I assure you that I'll now work even harder, so that your dreams, nation's dreams can be realised." As the three farm laws are repealed, what's next on the court? The Prime Minister said that a committee will be formed to look into the formation of an efficient base for the Minimum Selling Price (MSP).
Narendra Modi said, "We have also decided to implement Zero Budget Natural Farming. To make MSP more efficient & other issues, a committee to be formed which will comprise, Centre, State representatives, farmers, scientists, and economists. Our government will continue to work for farmers." He extended his greetings to all on the occasion of Dev Deepawali and Prakash Parv. He said, "It is pleasing that Kartarpir Corridor has re-opened after a gap of 1.5 years."
In what has become an unexpected announcement, Prime Minister Modi's announcement of repealing the farm laws has stirred mixed reactions from across the country and most of them had welcomed it. Repealing the farm laws has been a sole demand from the farmers and they had been protesting in Delhi for over a year amid the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown. They feared that the farm laws will open the gates for private players into the market and they will destroy their MSP. Farmers from several states including Punjab, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh had protested against the laws for over a year.
The unions of the protesting farmers and the Union government had held several rounds of talks with no consensus met. The peasants didn't come down from their sole demand of revoking the laws and they had camped in Delhi in temporary shelters. On the other side, the government had exercised a clampdown against the farmers and used excessive forces to block them from entering Delhi. The BJP and its affiliates, including farm groups, had held protests in favour of farm laws to counter the agitation against Modi.
The farmers who protested against the farm laws were largely from Punjab, which is going to face assembly polls next year. The protests were in an unprecedented fashion that they withstood chilling winter and intense summer and it has been reported that 700 farmers have died during the protest against the farm laws. Despite all these, the Centre didn't show a sign that the laws will be revoked and several politicians had said that if Modi's claim of 'Our government will work for farmers' could have done earlier, these lives would be saved and the voices of the farmers would be heard. The opposition parties criticize that Modi had heard the voices of farmers not for them but for their votes.
#WATCH | We have decided to repeal all 3 farm laws, will begin the procedure at the Parliament session that begins this month. I urge farmers to return home to their families and let's start afresh: PM Narendra Modi pic.twitter.com/0irwGpna2N— ANI (@ANI) November 19, 2021
#WATCH | PM Narendra Modi says, "Whatever I did, I did for farmers. What I'm doing, is for the country. With your blessings, I never left out anything in my hard work. Today I assure you that I'll now work even harder, so that your dreams, nation's dreams can be realised." pic.twitter.com/pTWTEAut4P— ANI (@ANI) November 19, 2021
#WATCH | We have also decided to implement Zero Budget Natural Farming...To make MSP more efficient & other issues...a committee to be formed which will comprise, Centre, State representatives, farmers, scientists, economists...Our govt will continue to work for farmers: PM Modi pic.twitter.com/Y27eKzUScy— ANI (@ANI) November 19, 2021