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Opposition Parties Hold Protests against Agri Laws across Country

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Leading the protest in Kancheepuram, DMK President MK Stalin said the farm laws were opposed by farmers in states like Punjab, Haryana, West Bengal, Karnataka, Kerala and Rajasthan

NEW DELHI – Opposition parites on Monday held protests against agri laws in various states – Tamil Nadu, Goa, Telangana, Delhi and Karnataka.

Opposition parties led by DMK on Monday held protests in Tamil Nadu against the three agriculture-related laws and urged the central government to scrap the same.

The Bills were passed by Parliament, following which President Ram Nath Kovind gave his assent on September 24. The central government notified these in the gazette on Sunday.

Leading the protest in Kancheepuram, DMK President MK Stalin said the farm laws were opposed by farmers in states like Punjab, Haryana, West Bengal, Karnataka, Kerala and Rajasthan.

The protest was also held to condemn the AIADMK government for supporting the Bills in Parliament and outside, he added.

Leaders of DMK-led allies agitated in other parts of the southern state.

In a separate statement, Stalin condemned the permission given by the central government to hold field trials of genetically modified BT brinjal in eight states, including Tamil Nadu.

Stalin urged the state government to deny permission and also demanded the Union government to cancel it.

The DMK leader also demanded that Tamil Nadu increase the procurement price of paddy to Rs 3,000 per quintal.

The Congress in Goa staged a protest at the Raj Bhavan here to protest against the three new agricultural laws and demanded their rollback.

In a memorandum submitted at the Raj Bhavan, Goa Congress leaders leading more than 1,000 protestors claimed the new legislations were “anti-farmer but corporate-friendly”.

“The biggest flaw in the contract farming law is that Minimum Support Price (MSP) is not mandatory. Once the mandi system is abolished, farmers will be solely dependent on contract farming and big companies will decide the price of farmer’s crops on their own,” claimed the memorandum signed by top Congress functionaries and addressed to the President of India.

“If this is not a new ‘zamindari system’, what else is? Through this specious mode of contract farming, farmers will be left at the mercy of big companies, courts and bureaucracy in the event of any dispute.

“In such a scenario, powerful big companies will naturally exercise their influence on bureaucracy and attack the very livelihood of farmers by engaging them in the legal intricacies and earn profits,” the memorandum said.

Hyderabad police detained leaders of opposition Congress party marching towards Raj Bhavan as part of the protest over the newly enacted Farm Laws.

Led by party incharge in the state Manickam Tagore, party leaders and activists tried to head towards the Telangana Governor’s official residence from nearby Dilkusha guest house.

Raising slogans against ‘anti-farmer’ legislation, Modi government and Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao, they were stopped by the police.

The Congress leaders said they wanted to submit a memorandum to Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan or any other official at Raj Bhavan but the police refused to allow them as there was no appointment for the same.

State Congress chief N. Uttam Kumar Reddy said it was unfortunate that they were denied appointment to submit the memorandum.

“This is injustice to the principal opposition party which always stood by farmers,” he said.

He said they were ready to submit memorandum to any official sent by the governor to the main gate but even this was not allowed. “This is unfortunate. The governor, whose duty to safeguard the Constitution, should have at least allowed us to submit the memorandum,” he said.

The march to Raj Bhavan by Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) was part of the nation-wide protest called by Congress over the contentious farm legislation.

Tagore, who was recently appointed as state incharge for Telangana, personally led the protest. AICC secretaries Bose Raju and Sreenivasan, TPCC working president A. Revanth Reddy and Ponnam Prabhakar, Damodar Rajanarasimha, Sravan Dasoju, D. Sreedhar Babu and other leaders participated in the protest.

Tagore, who is on his first visit to Hyderabad since his appointment as Congress incharge, called up on the party cadre to actively participate in the ongoing protests over farm legislation.

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