Eighth round of talks between farmers and government fails to end impasse; next meeting on January 15

The protesting farmers have hardened their stand on the laws.“Our ‘ghar wapsi’ can happen only if you do ‘law wapsi‘,” one farmer leader said at the meeting today

Representative Image (NH Photo by Vipin)
Representative Image (NH Photo by Vipin)

NH Web Desk

The eight round of talks between the protesting farmers and the government on Friday failed to break the stalemate, and the next meeting will be held on January 15.

Ahead of the talks, the government had expressed hope of positive results from the meeting while the farmers threatened to intensify the stir if their demand to repeal three contentious farm laws is not fulfilled.

Farmer leader Gurbaksa Singh Barnala said that the farmers will intensify the stir and enter Delhi on Republic Day if their demands are not met. "There is no way forward but to repeal the three laws," he said.

Agriculture Minister Narendra Sigh Tomar, Consumer Affairs Minister Piyush Goyal and Minister of State for Commerce and Industries Som Parkash represented the government at the talks at the Vigyan Bhavan, while Agriculture Secretary Sanjay Agarwal and other Ministry officials were also present.

"Discussion on the laws was taken up but no decision could be made. The government urged that if farmer unions give an option other than repealing, we'll consider it. But no option could be presented, so the meeting was concluded and it was decided to hold the next meeting on January 15," Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

The protesting farmers, meanwhile, have hardened their stand on the laws.

"Our ghar wapsi  can happen only if you do 'law wapsi'," one farmer leader said at the meeting today, PTI reported.

Another pointed out that ideally, the Centre should not interfere in agriculture matters as various Supreme Court orders have declared farming as a state subject.

"It seems you (the government) do not want to resolve the issue as talks have been happening for so many days. In that case, please give us a clear answer and we will go. Why to waste everyone's time," he said, according to a PTI report.

At the meeting, some farmers displayed placards with the message,"We will or die".

All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC) member Kavitha Kuruganti, who was also present in the meeting, said the government told the unions it can not and will not repeal these laws.

(With agency inputs)

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Published: 08 Jan 2021, 6:16 PM