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BJP to Turn More Farmer-friendly

Published: 24th February 2015 06:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 24th February 2015 06:00 AM   |  A+A-

NEW DELHI: With Anna Hazare starting his two-day protest and several other farmer bodies also converging here on Monday, the Centre hinted that it was inclined to address their concerns and may even agree to bring some changes in the Bill, which replaces the Land Acquisition Ordinance.

The BJP parliamentary board met here at Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s residence to discuss the fallout of the farmers’ agitation and even the Opposition parties gearing up to disrupt the proceedings of both the Houses on the Land Bill decided to engage with the farmers to dispel latter’s fears.

The three-hour-long meeting was attended by senior BJP leaders Amit Shah, Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley, Nitin Gadkari, Ananth Kumar, Thawar Chand Gehlot and J P Nadda among others. In the meeting it was decided that both Rajnath and Amit Shah would meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi and relay the concerns and points raised by the farmers.

The BJP leadership also decided to hold a meeting of the Land Reforms Council to take up the concerns of landless labourers and farmers.

Talking about the deliberations, Chemical and Fertiliser Minister Ananth Kumar said: “There are several issues in the minds of farmers. We have an inclination to ponder and go into these concerns. In today’s informal meeting of the parliamentary board, important issues before Parliament, including the Land Bill, were discussed.”

“There have been various concerns raised by farmers’ representatives during their meetings with the Home Minister and we have taken note of them,” Ananth Kumar added.

He said the Prime Minister himself had said in the all-party meeting that the BJP was ready for a thorough debate in Parliament on the Land Ordinance and accept suggestions.

Separately, a senior Cabinet minister told Express that the government would introduce the Bill replacing the Ordinance, but the changes could be made when it was taken up for discussion.

The government has now replaced the Ordinance with the Land Acquisition Bill for introduction in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday.

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