Farmer groups rejected the Supreme Court’s suggestion to appoint a committee to resolve the ongoing crisis over three farm reform laws. They say the Centre’s attitude in court on Monday makes it clear that the government will not agree to discuss farmers’ demand to repeal the three laws in such a committee.

“While all organizations welcome the Honorable Supreme Court’s suggestions to suspend the implementation of agricultural laws, they are collectively and individually unwilling to participate in proceedings before a committee which may be appointed by the Honorable Supreme Court, ”Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) said in a statement released late Monday night.

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The statement added that the decision comes on “a review of the attitude and approach of the government which has made it clear in court today on several occasions that it will not accept the repeal discussion before the committee”.

Lawyers representing farmers at the court hearing said they would consult with farmer groups about the court’s suggestion to set up a committee. Discussions with lawyers took place at the Singhu border, led by union leaders Balbir Singh Rajewal, Darshan Pal, Prem Singh Bhangu, Rajinder Singh Deep Singh Wala and Jagmohan Singh. After discussing the pros and cons of the committee, the farmers rejected the suggestion.

Read also: Demonstration of farmers | Farmers and Center reach agreement on two issues

The statement expressed “respect” and “gratitude” for the court’s “understanding of the issue and the heartwarming words” of the court during the hearing, but regretted that the unions were not able to accede to its suggestions. because millions of farmers across the country demanded the complete repeal. laws.

They expressed disappointment that the court issues the order on Tuesday without further consultation.

Also read: Farmers’ protest | Tractor rallies on the highways around Delhi

“The Hon’ble Supreme Court has been requested by our lawyers as well as other lawyers, including Sh Harish Salve, to re-schedule the hearing tomorrow to allow them to consult with the organizations and obtain their consent to the suggestion. of Hon’ble Court, ”the statement said. “We were told that no such hearing has been scheduled for tomorrow according to the list of cases already published for tomorrow until 9 p.m. and that only questions are listed for statements made to order of the Court honorable. These events have deeply disappointed us, our lawyers and also farmers in general.

“A committee is just a delaying tactic, which is what the government wants,” said Union President Krantikari Kisan Darshan Pal. “Why hijack and dilute the growing farmer movement with a committee? The protest is against the government, so the government should face the wrath of the people and repeal the laws, ”he said.

The unions also feared that they would be pressured into binding mediation without clarifying the powers of the committee. “Sometimes they say it’s a technical committee, sometimes they say it will have experts, sometimes they say it will be a committee of judges,” said a chief, who did not wish to be named.

Previously, BKU (Ekta-Ugrahan), one of the largest farmer groups in Punjab, has made it clear that restless farmers want farm laws removed. “Let’s wait for the Supreme Court order, but we are here to repeal the agricultural laws,” said Jhanda Singh, Punjab state vice president of BKU (U).

Read also: Demonstration of farmers | Center turns to Supreme Court as talks with farmers fail to break deadlock

“These laws clearly infringe on the functions of the state. Agriculture is a state matter, yet the Center pushed through the laws through the commercial media, which is on the concomitant list. These laws clearly violate the federal principle. The Supreme Court should ask the government to repeal the laws, ”he said.

“The Supreme Court’s first comments on the government’s inaction and [upholding] the right of farmers to protest is welcome, ”said All India Kisan Sabha General Secretary Hannan Mollah. Regarding the court’s suggestion that it could impose a suspension of the implementation of reform laws, he noted that a suspension was not the same as a repeal.

Another peasant leader, who declined to speak until the final order, said the unions expected a “honey trap” to prompt them into binding mediation in the form of a committee appointed by the court, followed by the demonstrators’ vacations.

“Not a single petitioner has formally requested mediation, although the Center has urged farmers to discuss the matter in committee,” the chief said. “It just confirms that the government is forcing the court to do what it cannot,” he said.

The unions also rejected any suggestion that their Republic Day plans had been put on hold. In court, lead lawyer Dushyant Dave had refuted the Center’s claim that farmers would bring 2,000 tractors to participate in the Republic Day parade.

“We have no intention of disrupting the parade on Rajpath or disrupting the celebrations in any way. We only said that we would organize our own parade of parallel tractors in Delhi, ”said a union leader.

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