Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) national convener and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal criticised the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for endorsing the three contentious farm laws, even as lawmakers from his party shouted slogans against the new laws in the central hall of the Parliament on Friday.
Kejriwal said in a tweet: “According to the BJP, these laws will not cause any losses to farmers. But what will be the benefits? They (BJP) claims that these will enable farmers to sell their produce outside agricultural produce markets. But outside markets, agricultural produce sells for half the price. So, where is the benefit? The truth is that these laws have several disadvantages and no benefits at all.”
Earlier on Friday, four MPs of the AAP had protested against the law in the central hall of the Parliament after Prime Minister Narendra Modi was done paying tribute to former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee on his 96th birth anniversary.
The AAP’s lone Lok Sabha MP from Punjab Bhagwant Mann later said in a press conference at the party’s head office in Central Delhi, “Today, once again, we demanded that the government rolls back the three laws. Through our protest, we tried to reach out to PM Narendra Modi but he did not even care to listen to us. It clearly shows that the BJP has no intention to listen to the protesting farmers.”
The BJP, however, dismissed the allegations.
Leader of Opposition in Delhi Assembly Ramvir Singh Bidhuri said, “When the Union home minister has given a clear assurance to farmers, we fail to understand why the AAP leaders are misleading them. The AAP should look at its own anti-farmer reforms. They charge road tax on tractors, higher power rate for irrigation and hardly procure anything at Minimum Support Price (MSP). Delhi farmers are in distress because of them.”
Farmers are protesting against the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020, and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.
The AAP had voted against the three laws in both Houses of the Parliament when they were passed in September.