CHANDIGARH: On the eve of the sixth round of talks to resolve the monthlong agrarian agitation, farmer unions on Tuesday wrote to Centre formally accepting its invite for talks the next day, but insisted on exploring a ‘rational solution’ to the issues flagged by them, including modalities to repeal the three contentious farm laws.
While farmers had sought a ‘rational solution’ in their letter on December 26, Union Agriculture Secretary Sanjay Aggarwal had on December 28 stated the government’s commitment to find a ‘logical resolution’ to all topical issues with an open mind and clear intention. The semantics of a ‘rational solution’ vis a vis a ‘logical resolution’ is expected to play out when both sides meet on Wednesday.
But going by the tone and tenor of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha’s latest letter to Aggarwal, any optimism of an early breakthrough could be totally misplaced. Union ministers Narendra Singh Tomar and Piyush Goyal, who have been representing the Centre on the talks table, met home minister Amit Shah to finalise the government’s position for the meeting.
The Samyukt Kisan Morcha is an umbrella body of 40 farmer unions. Its agenda for the talks includes legal guarantee for procurement of farm produce on a minimum support price (MSP) regime; amendments to the air quality ordinance; and procedure for withdrawal of draft the Electricity Amendment Bill. In view of the talks, the morcha put off its tractor march from the Singhu and the Tikri border to the Kundli- Manesar-Palwal Highway by a day to December 31.