NCP chief Sharad Pawar today warned the central government against testing the patience of farmers protesting against the three new agricultural laws which, he said, had been hurried through Parliament. If not tackled in time, the senior leader said, the agitation could snowball as more people join it from various parts of the country.
“The farm laws were passed in hurry. There is a chance that this protest will spread across the nation. The solution to end this stalemate is to roll back the laws and have discussion with farmers,” Mr Pawar told mediapersons in Mumbai.
“We insist…the farmer is the annadata (food provider) of the country. His tolerance should not be tested,” said the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) President.
Indicating that the current deadlock between the protesters and the authorities is likely to continue for some time, he said the farmers “extreme demand” of withdrawing the laws was now faced with the government’s unfavourable stance.
The veteran leader, who was also Union agriculture minister, said that more people, travelling on around 700 tractors, had joined the ongoing protest along the Delhi border on Friday morning.
“I have been told that more farmers are coming every day and joining them from different parts of county,” he said. “The protest is restricted to Delhi border. But it cannot be ruled out that it may spread elsewhere, too, if no decision is taken in time.”
When asked about Union Minister Raosaheb Danve’s comment about the involvement of China and Pakistan in the farmers’ agitation, he said, “Some people are such that they do not have the sense of what should be said where and how. He had made such statements in the past too…We should not pay attention to such comments.”