Farmers call off year-long protests as govt agrees demands
- Their 14-month strike will end at 12 pm on Thursday
- Compensation to all agitating farmers' families who died as a result of the agitation was one of the demands
- In the case of stubble burning, farmers have no criminal liability
Farmers protesting near the national capital's borders have at last decided to call an end to their year-long protest after intense negotiations initiated by the Union home ministry. This comes after the Centre agreed to all of the protesting farmers' demands, including the dismissal of all agitation-related cases and compensation for the families of farmers who died as a result of the movement against the controversial agriculture laws.
The Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), the umbrella body of farmers' unions that has led the protests, announced last night that their 14-month strike will end at 12 pm on Thursday, but only after they obtain the final copy of the government's revised proposal accepting their demands.
The following were the demands of the protesting farmers:
Pulling out all agitation-related cases filed in all states and union territories, as well as under central government agencies, during this protest.
Compensation to all agitating farmers' families who died as a result of the agitation.
In the case of stubble burning, farmers have no criminal liability.
Before bringing the Electricity Amendment Bill to Parliament, the government must consult with the SKM or other farmers' unions.
The SKM will list out their members in the panel and provide it to the farmers. A committee to discuss minimum support price (MSP) will be formed.
The country's current policy on MSP and its procurement will be maintained.
After the central government agreed to return all cases filed during the farm agitation and for stubble burning, a consensus was reached to end the farmers' protests. The government has also promised to table the Electricity Amendment Bill only after consulting with the SKM or pertinent farmers' unions, according to the protesting farmers.
In addition, the state governments of Haryana and Uttar Pradesh have agreed to offer a compensation of Rs 5 lakh and a job to the blood relatives of deceased farmers, similar to Punjab. Finally, the demand that only SKM leaders be included in the MSP committee – rather than state and federal officials and agricultural experts – was met.
Farmers had previously demanded the dismissal of Union minister Ajay Mishra, whose son Ashish is facing charges in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence case. The SKM's five-member panel had removed that point, according to the most recent demand proposal sent to the Centre.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced on November 19 that the central government will introduce the necessary bills to repeal the farm laws during the winter session of Parliament. He also stated that the government would appoint a committee to work on a new MSP framework.
The Farm Laws Repeal Bill was passed by both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha on November 29, the first day of the winter session. The bill received President Ram Nath Kovind's signature, completing the process of repealing the three farm laws.