SAD invites farmer bodies for talks to remove 'misgivings' about its poll outreach campaign

By PTI

CHANDIGARH: The SAD on Monday said it has urged all 32 farmer organisations to constitute a committee to hold talks with it to remove all “misgivings” regarding its poll outreach programme ‘Gal Punjab Di’.

The move comes after a group of farmers allegedly tried to force their way inside the venue of a SAD event — where party chief Sukhbir Singh Badal was speaking — in Punjab’s Moga district last week.

After the incident, Badal had put on hold for six days the party’s poll outreach campaign ‘Gal Punjab Di’.

The Shiromani Akali Dal had also formed a committee to hold talks with farmers to reiterate its “unflinching support” for their agitation against the Centre’s three contentious farm laws.

In a letter to the farmer bodies on Monday, Akali leader and former MP Prem Singh Chandumajra said the SAD had always stood up for the cause of farmers and supported every decision of the Samyukt Kisam Morcha (SKM).

“It is with this spirit and the welfare of farmers that we wish to engage with farmer organisations and address all their concerns as well as work unitedly to ensure the repeal of the three black laws. This is also why we have postponed our campaign for one week,” he said.

Chandumajra said on the part of the SAD, senior leaders including Balwinder Bhundur and Manjinder Singh Sirsa would engage with the ‘Kisan’ organisations at the time and place of their choosing.

He said this was being done to remove “misgivings” about the party’s poll outreach programme.

He also talked about how the party had exercised its democratic right to reach out to the people through the ‘Gal Punjab Di’ campaign and take feedback on steps needed to rebuild the state which had been “devastated” during the Congress’ “misrule”.

“I am sure the Kisan organisations will understand this sentiment and realise that we are working for the welfare of farmers and people of the state at large”, Chandumajra said in a statement issued here.

He alleged that the Congress party in Punjab was a divided house and its government and chief minister Amarinder Singh had failed to deliver on any of the promises made to the people.

Meanwhile, Akali leader Bikram Singh Majithia in Amritsar urged all political parties to work unitedly to ensure the repeal of the three agriculture laws.

Reacting to farmers’ rally at Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh, Majithia said, “The farming community has given a clear signal to the central leadership in Delhi that it should be ready to face a people’s movement if it does not listen to the voice of the farmers.” He appealed to political parties in Punjab to also rise to the occasion and not use the flag of the Kisan movement for their “petty political ends”.

“This will only result in spoiling the atmosphere of the state and give an opportunity to the BJP central government to impose President’s rule in the state,” he said.