Farmer leaders on Thursday said they will consult senior lawyers, including Colin Gonsalves, Dushyant Dave and Prashant Bhushan, before deciding the next course of action after the Supreme Court said it was thinking of setting up an “impartial and independent” panel of agriculture experts and peasants’ unions to resolve the deadlock over the contentious farm laws.
The protesting farmer leaders welcomed the top court’s move to acknowledge the right of farmers to non-violent protests, but asserted that their agitation will continue until a concrete solution is found.
“We will meet senior lawyers Colin Gonsalves, Dushyant Dave, H S Phoolka and Prashant Bhushan on Friday and consult them about what can be done,” Abhimanyu Kohar, a leader of the Rashtriya Kisan Mazdoor Sabha, told PTI.
He said the Sanyukt Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body of around 40 farmer unions protesting at Delhi’s border points, has not received any notice from the Supreme Court, adding that it will comment on the matter only after seeing a copy of the court”s order.
Senior Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Dharampal Malik said a technical team has been formed by the union, adding that the Centre should first make its stance clear on whether it wants to put the contentious farm laws on hold.
“We will first read the Supreme Court’s order, consult our lawyers and then decide the next course of action,” he said.
Meanwhile, the protesting farmers observed a two-minute silence on Thursday to pay their respects to Sikh preacher Sant Ram Singh, who allegedly committed suicide at the Singhu border on Wednesday.
Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court acknowledged the right of farmers to non-violent protests and mooted the idea of putting on hold the contentious farm laws to enable negotiations with the agitating farmers, which was opposed by the Centre, which said the agriculturists would not come forward for the talks then.
The top court, which made it clear that the issue of farmers” protest and the right of others to move freely would be dealt on priority at the moment and not the validity of the laws, also said it was thinking of setting up an “impartial and independent” panel of agriculture experts and farmer unions to resolve the impasse.
The top court said it was of the view that the farmers’ right to protest should not infringe the fundamental right of others to move freely and in getting essential food and other supplies as right to protest cannot mean blocking the entire city.
The top court, which said it was worried with the way things are going on, was told by both the Centre and one of the farmers” unions that the negotiations are not happening at the moment.
It also said the farmers cannot keep on protesting without talking to the government.
(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)