Farmers' leaders should decide whether they want praise from Pakistan, cautions Union Minister Balyan slamming Rakesh Tikait


NEW DELHI: Terming Kisan Mahapanchayat a “political gathering”, Union Minister Sanjeev Balyan on Monday slammed Bhartiya Kisan Union (Arajnaitik) leader, Rakesh Tikait for becoming a tool in hands of the country’s rivals.

Balyan, Member of Parliament from Muzzafarnagar constituency, asked farmer leaders to think about whether they want to be praised by the Pakistan government for their agitation against the Central government.

Responding to Radio Pakistan tweet about Kisan Mahapanchayat in Muzzafarnagar, Balyan said, “When elections come, everyone indulges in rallies and Uttar Pradesh gets too many rallies. But farmers leaders need to think about whether they want praise from the Pakistan government?”

“Those who are India’s enemies or oppose us, whether these leaders want to be liked by our rivals like Pakistan. They need to decide this for themselves,” he added.

He, however, cautioned farmers into getting played in hands of other political parties lending support to agitation to further their own propaganda.

“It felt like Rajnitik mahapanchayat, a political gathering rather than Kisan mahapanchayat. Farmers issues were barely discussed in that gathering,” observed Balyan. The minister further said that farmers are being misused by various political parties to further their agendas.

“We saw banners and flags of various political parties in that Mahapanchayat. Everyone knows who took the farmers to Red Fort,” stated Balyan.

A Kisan Mahapanchayat was held in Muzzafarnagar on Sunday against three farm laws by the Centre and declared that they will campaign against BJP in the upcoming assembly elections. The Mahapanchayat witnessed participation from various political parties.

Balyan, however, expressed confidence that the BJP would win the Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls again.

“BJP will form government in Uttar Pradesh. The elections are in February and in March we will sit to form the government. We will go to everyone even those who did Mahapanchayat. Even those who are opposing us and will ask for votes” said the union minister who slammed Tikait for taking out a tractor rally during Muzzafarnagar riots against the government.

“UP hasn’t forgotten the period between 2012 and 2017,” stated the minister.

UP Assembly polls are scheduled to take place early next year. In 2017, the BJP won a landslide victory winning 312 Assembly seats. The party secured a 39.67 per cent vote share in the elections for 403-member Assembly. Samajwadi Party (SP) bagged 47 seats, BSP won 19 while Congress could manage to win only seven seats.

Tikait on Monday said that the new agricultural laws are stifling the farmers slowly unlike COVID which will take life at a one go.

“No one questioned the yataras organised by the government. The laws made by the government are more dangerous than COVID. Pandemic will kill you in one go but the laws of the government will kill people slowly,” he said when asked that a huge number of people gathered at the Kisan Mahapanchayat organised by the Sanyukt Kisan Morcha in Muzaffarnagar can turn to super spreader event as COVID infections soar.

“The gathering at the Kisan Mahapanchayat at the Muzaffarnagar is proof that people are not satisfied with the work of the government.”

Tikait also reiterated that they would not leave the Delhi borders till “they emerge victorious”.

The Sanyukt Kisan Morcha’s ‘Kishan Mahapanchayat’ was held at the Government Inter College grounds in Muzaffarnagar.

Speaking to ANI, the farmer leader said that BKU does not want to join the politics and instead it is in favour of resolving their issues.

This comes in response to Union Minister and Muzaffarnagar MP Sanjeev Balyan earlier on Sunday said that if Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) wants to enter politics then the BJP will be welcome them.

“We do not want to join politics. We just want the issues of farmers to be resolved. There are leaders in BJP who are supporting the farmers. The people know who are the leaders not supporting farmers, they will react according to it. Balyan should support the farmers like Varun Gandhi and Satya Pal Malik,” Tikait said.

Bharatiya Janata Party MP from Pilibhit, Varun Gandhi had come out in support of protesting farmers and said that the Centre should understand the pain of farmers.

Farmers have been protesting on the different borders of the national capital since November 26 last year against the three newly enacted farm laws: 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.Farmer leaders and the Centre have held several rounds of talks but the impasse remains.