- Posted by: Valerie Vaz MP
- Category: News
The Sikh Supreme Council wrote to me to say that the demands of the protesting farmers were been successful. I co-signed with 35 other MPs in December 2020 to the then Foreign Secretary an open letter about the treatment of the farmers who were taking part in peaceful protest to protect their land. In February 2021, I followed up with another letter highlighting that my constituents and I were horrified by reports of police brutality against the farmers protesting these laws, and that my constituents are concerned that this legislation would place all purchasing power in the hands of large corporations.
The letter was signed by Cllr Gurdial S. Atwal, the Chair of the Council’s Indian Subcontinent Committee. In his letter he said:
“Dear Rt Hon Member of Parliament
Re: Victory for Indian Farmers – Thank you
The following were the demands of the protesting farmers:
1. Withdrawal of all the agitation-related cases registered during this protest in all states and Union territories, or under central government agencies, etc.
2. It includes cases registered during the farm agitation and for stubble burning.
3. Compensation to all the families of the agitating farmers who died during the course of agitation. Government agreed to provide a compensation of ₹5 lakh and a job to the kin of deceased farmers.
4. No criminal liability to farmers in the cases of stubble burning.
5. The government has to discuss the Electricity Amendment Bill with the SKM or with other farmers’ unions before bringing it up in Parliament.
6. A committee to discuss minimum support price (MSP) is to be formed; the SKM will list out their members in the panel and provide it to the farmers.
7. The ongoing policy on MSP and its procurement in the country will continue as it is.
Great victory for all Indian farmers and the agricultural workers. The diaspora Sikhs played a huge role in providing humanitarian aid and in raising the issue on the international stage. Many prominent personalities and politicians raised their voice in support. It is collective victory against corporatisation and exploitation of farmers across the world.”