The ninth round of talks between farmer unions and three union ministers on Friday ended with stalemate over new agricultural laws, that protesters say will threaten their livelihoods. The two sides will meet again on January 19
Previous rounds of talks have so far failed to mollify tens of thousands of farmers who have been camping out on the outskirts of Delhi for almost two months.
The government has been urging the farmers to end their protest over the laws introduced in September, but the farmers say they will not relent on their demands
Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, Railways, Commerce and Food Minister Piyush Goyal and Minister of State for Commerce Som Parkash, who is an MP from Punjab, held talks with representatives of 40 farmer unions at Vigyan Bhawan in Delhi.
“Our demands of repealing of the three farm laws & MSP guarantee remain.
We will not go to the committee constituted by the Supreme Court. We will talk to the central government only,” said Rakesh Tikait, a leader of the Bharatiya Kisan Union, referring to the government-guaranteed support price for certain farm produce.
The government has been urging the farmers, who are mostly from Punjab and Haryana , to end their protest over the laws introduced in September, but the farmers say they will not relent on their demands, as the bills are designed to benefit private buyers at the expense of growers.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered an interim stay on the implementation of new agricultural laws and appointed a four-member panel to hear farmers’ objections.
Raising doubts over the panel’s composition, farmer union leaders have said they would not appear before the committee.
In an embarrassment to ruling establishment Bhupinder Singh Mann, one of the four members, has recused himself from the Supreme Court-appointed panel.