Archive for August, 2021


Farmers Protest: State Units

   Posted by: aman    in Other

Day 278

Toll 593

State Units

As the protests are growing, also in view of the end of harvest season and bigger crowds at the sites of protest, there is a need to deepen representation and facilitate communication between different unions.

With this in mind – while the Samyukt Kisan Morcha is a coming together of 32 farmers unions from Panjab, and unions from other states – unions in Uttrakhand and Haryana are coming together to form their own state units. Going forward, these state units will coordinate with the SKM and decide and implement programs for the entire protest.

Against the government’s lip service to an oxymoron called ‘cooperative federalism’ when all it does is increase centralisation, by creating local and state units the farmers are presenting another model of real grassroots federalism to the nation.



Farmers Protest: Gharonda

   Posted by: aman    in Other

Day 277

Toll 593


AJ Singh

Resolution passed at Gharonda, Karnal Haryana after police brutality where one Farmer lost his life.

1. Farmer union demand action against the police and Karnal SDM Ayush Sinha for instructing the police to use force to prevent farmers from crossing the barricades to reach the venue of a state level meeting of the ruling BJP at a private hotel in Karnal on Saturday.

2. To take back all cases filed by Karnal police against hundreds of farmers, including 27 by name, for attacking the police and blocking the highway.

3. To file FIR under IPC section 302 against SDM Sinha, and inspector Harjinder Singh, who is also JJP leader Balbir Singh’s brother.

Adding from Shamsher Singh’s comment below:

1. To gherao the Karnal district secretariat on September 7 demanding compensation of INR 25 lakh and job for one family member of the martyred farmer, INR 2 lakh for injured farmers.

2. Farmers’ organisations from Haryana will strongly urge the SKM to take ‘bold’ decisions as per the emerging situation in Haryana where the state government has cracked down on farmers at multiple occasions. The meeting also decided to form an exclusive group of organisations from Haryana for better coordination at the state level.

Ayush Sinha is the SDM (Karnal). The lathi-charge took place in Gharonda in the presence of the Duty Magistrate (SDM-Gharonda) Pooja Bharti. My take is, let police establish Sinha was not present and Bharti was present, then she can also be implicated. We all know how these cases go. The idea is to rattle the official machinery that carries out the diktats of politicians. There is another call going around, in theory, that let Khaps instruct police personnel from their villages to not carry out violence against farmers. If that happens and is followed, the official machinery will be in great crises.


Farmers Protest: Jallianwala

   Posted by: aman    in Other

Day 276

Toll 585+


Whether is is re-writing history, re-creating martyr lists, re-configuring pictures of leaders, the right-wing – which played no role in the freedom struggle and wrote apology letters to the British – is past master at creating ironies.

The Jallianwala Bagh, Amritsar massacre in 1919 triggered the freedom movement in earnest. Yesterday the right wing put the irony into practice. A few hours before the prime minister was to inaugurate modern exhibits – museum and exhibits with dazzling lights – at Jallianwala Bagh, the Haryana police on the orders of Karnal SDM Ayush Sinha, mercilessly lathi-charged farmers at Bastara toll plaza breaking limbs and heads since the orders were ‘sar phod do’.

The issue was a general diktat among farmers unions to prevent the BJP-JJP Haryana government ministers from participating in public meetings and programs. Haryana CM Khattar was to come to his home constituency Karnal. Farmers were protesting at the toll plaza 15 kilometers from the CM’s venue with black flags. In the past months, skirmishes have happened, FIRs have been filed, arrests have been made, activists have been freed, government has passed draconian laws registering complaints against thousands, but this time it was sheer violence by the state.

In the re-enactment of Jallianwala Bagh at Karnal, around 10 farmers were badly injured. The police also took 11 farmers in custody. Around 3 pm, the SKM issued a call to all farmers of the state to block all roads. It was immediately implemented and the blockade stayed until this morning 7.30 am when the police released the farmers it had taken into custody.

The demand is for the SDM who gave the orders to be suspended. However, looking at how CM Khattar and and the SDM have spoken in press, alleging stone throwing by farmers, it is clear that the conspiracy to carry out a brutal attack was masterminded by powers higher than an SDM.

The real intention of the undue violence against farmers is to cause a retaliation, turn the nine-month long peaceful farmers protest violent, and use even more brutal force to evict the protesters. That is the distraction the government is trying to create from the upcoming September 5 rally in Muzaffarnagar. That rally is critical for Opposition galvanising against Yogi in UP in the upcoming elections.


PANJAB: Mention in Essential Reads on Panjab

   Posted by: aman    in Punjab

Dear Friends,

I was pleasantly surprised to see PANJAB Journeys Through Fault Lines mentioned among top seven reads on Panjab on a blog. In fact, on top.

Click here to read.


PANJAB: Talk at IISc

   Posted by: aman    in Punjab

Dear friends,

a few days back, Bitasta Das invited me to speak to scholars and friends at Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore.

Please click to listen to the talk.

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Farmers Protest: Police

   Posted by: aman    in Other

Day 273

Toll 582


We all now know about ‘the 6 trillion dollars sale to achieve the 5 million tonne economy’. – Thanks to Shakti D for the line.

Question is: who will guard all these privatised assets?

Would our, taxpayers, money go into paying salaries of police and para-military forces standing guard on private factories and assets or would new private owners raise their own security forces and has been in vogue for the last few decades? You know, like the private security guards for apartment complexes and corporate offices.

That brings us to the apprehension I have had for years now: obviously, like with everything else, government will stop funding state police forces. Police forces will see huge reduction in jobs. New recruitments will reduce. India will have bigger and bigger private militias.

That would take us to South America or closer still to Afghanistan. I hope the police forces and para-military think about it when they next raise their batons and open their prisons and file FIRs against those protesting rise of crony capitalism. It is in each individual police personnel’s interest to reflect upon what the government they defend will do with them.


Farmers Protest: All India Convention

   Posted by: aman    in Other

Day 272

Toll 581+

All India Convention

For those who have given in to lapdog media blackout and government apathy, have either written off the farmers’ protest or are tired and bored of it, the news is: the protests are going strong.

Yesterday, in a major departure from how the BJP government has dealt with the protests over nine months, the Panjab chief minister announced a revised State Advisory Price on sugar cane. At Rs 360 per quintal, this is a Rs 50 increase in procurement price that remained static for the last 4 years.

One could read the raise as a pressure due to upcoming state elections. However, these elections are approaching in Uttar Pradesh too. Yet, BJP does not relent. In UP, sugar cane dues to farmers over years accrue to over Rs 20,000 crore. In fact, if you remember, Mahendra Singh Tikait’s famous Boat Club protest in 1989 was also on sugar cane prices. Hopefully, Panjab government’s decision will impact UP also and farmers there too will recover their dues.

In Panjab my reading is: given the Captain-Sidhu war in Congress, Captain has to show winnability. Plus, unlike the rulers in Delhi, now after 9 months, Captain knows the farmers’ resilience. That is why, the Panjab government decided to agree to farmers’ demands and end the strike in 4 days instead of prolonging it. The same government is yet to agree to demands by labour. I hope they do that too soon.

In the age of WhatsApp University, lapdog media propaganda, the Samyukt Kisan Morcha will be holding an ‘All India Convention’ on August 26 and 27, 2021, at the Singhu Border Stage, to disseminate accurate information on many issues.

More than 1500 delegates from 20 states are expected to take part. They represent the broad spectrum of organizations which have been leading the genuine and democratic movements of working people and democratic masses. These include organizations based amongst farmers, a landless and agricultural workers, rural poor, tribal people, industrial workers, women, youth, students, small traders, ex defence services personnel, teachers, medical practitioners, lawyers and others.

The Convention shall have 5 sessions.

August 26,

- from 10 am to 1 pm, Inaugural Session

- from 2 pm to 3.30 pm, Session on Industrial Workers and Session on Agriculture Labour

- from 3.45 pm to 6 pm, Rural Poor and Tribal people.

August 27,

- from 9.30 am to 12 noon, Women, Students, Youth and other sections of working people

- from 12 noon to 1 pm, Concluding session

Follow the Kisan Ekta Morcha page for coverage.


Farmers Protest: Rakhi

   Posted by: aman    in Other

Day 270

Toll 581


We all know soldiers on the borders receive rakhis from the nation. Yesterday, farmers on Delhi’s borders also received rakhis. After all, like soldiers who defend nation from external enemies, farmers too are defending the nation from internal aggressors.

The protest for better sugarcane State Advisory Price (SAP) continues in Jalandhar. Farmers have blocked the national highway and train lines. Given Raksha Bandhan, the farmers did allow private cars and other vehicles on the roads but trucks and other state vehicles are blocked. The discussions between farmers and the state remained inconclusive.

As farmers leaders say: the protest in Delhi is for the nation, the protest in Jalandhar is for Panjab. The chief minister will make an announcement tomorrow.

In a written reply in the state Assembly, Shriram Chauhan, minister of state, Uttar Pradesh minister said: ‘the new ‘APMC Bypass Act’ created by the Central Government has adversely impacted the market revenues.’ He also said that the government has decided not to invest in new markets. A BJP ally, Janata Dal United’s KC Tyagi has endorsed the farmers demand to repeal the Farm Laws.

19 opposition parties have jointly put out a statement yesterday announcing nation-wide protests from September 20th to 30th, to get 11 issues addressed by the Modi government. One of the demands is ‘repeal the three anti-agriculture laws and compulsorily guarantee MSP to farmers’. These developments in BJP and Opposition are a complete vindication of the protesting farmers stand.

Meanwhile, in Haryana, the BJP-JJP state government has filed 136 cases, in addition to two cases of sedition against protesting farmers in the state. In these cases, the government has named 687 protestors by name, and has also filed cases against 38,000 unknown persons as accused. A mockery of justice!

See picture here…


Farmers Protest: Jalandhar

   Posted by: aman    in Other

Posted August 20, 2021

Day 267

Toll 565+


Major protest on by sugarcane farmers in Jalandhar against government increase in procurement rate of Rs 15. This is the first increase in 4 years and completely favours the sugar lobby.

Panjab has 9 Co-op Sugar Mills operating at 25 per cent capacity. The state has 7 private mills operating on 75 per cent capacity. Sugarcane prices have stayed static for last 4 years at Rs 310 per quintal.

Haryana rates are Rs 358 per quintal. Government has increased price by Rs 15, farmers demand Rs 400 per quintal. In Uttar Pradesh, dues to farmers over years accrue to over Rs 20,000 crores.

Mills are mulling increase in customer prices. Would you pay more for sugar that causes diabetes and host of other health issues? If not, support the strike. Get the government to intervene.


Farmers Protest: Mysore

   Posted by: aman    in Other

Posted August 18, 2021

Day 265

Toll 565+


Yesterday, Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Ms Shobha Karandlaje faced protesting farmers in Mysuru, Karnataka.

She was on a Jan Ashirwad program. The farmers insisted that she should retract her statement that the protesting farmers are commission agents and not farmers. They also raised the demands of the farmers’ movement with her.

This is the legacy of Karnataka’s great farmer leader BS Yediyurappa. BJP will destroy everything, by association or opposition.

See picture here …