9
Sep

Farmers Protest: Impunity

   Posted by: aman   in Other

Day 287

Toll 594

Impunity

Though the farmers protest held itself through last winter, chilly rains, COVID-19 pandemic second wave, extreme summer, devastating monsoon showers and floods, the onset of next winter has brought a new energy to the protest. Within 48 hours, armed with sheer will-power and a resolve for justice, the farmers moved 85 kilometers from Muzaffarnagar to Karnal, across two states ruled by draconian BJP government to stun both the government and the lapdog media. BJP had barely started to spin Muzaffarnagar, when Karnal hit. Godi media, that has sucked up the government for so long, has been forced to report Karnal.

This is a repeat of the November 27, 2020 move when by proceeding to Delhi despite Haryana police barricades, water canons, tear gas, the farmers had camped on the borders of Delhi. That move had surprised and awed the government. After that, the government kept trying to engage the farmers in a battle of attrition, tire them out, weaken them out, split them, but nothing worked. Nine long months later, the farmers are back in full spirit.

A thumb rule followed by all governments is to distract protesters from the real issue. Normally, in India, the government uses religion as bait. The government tried that on January 26, 2021. The brilliant aspect of these protests is in spite of their different faith, the farmers have stayed united. In fact, through langars, temples and mosques and gurdwaras have come together to serve the protesters.

Beyond awe and attrition, any struggle is about position. Whatever be anyone’s position on Farm Laws – support for laws has massively dwindled, call for repeal has gained strength – no one can deny the completely illegal nature of the Karnal SDM’s orders. Neither the Sangh, nor the BJP, not even the official machinery and least of all ordinary citizens. That places the farmers protesting in Karnal in a top position. There is no question of their demand being wrong at all – ideologically or politically.

Yet, the government is in denial. The Farm laws have been staked on Modi’s image as strongman – any retreat by government would have been seen by his followers as Modi’s weakness. Yet, this time the matter is about the role of the official machinery – who pays their salaries, who do they belong to, whose orders do they fulfil?

We know for long official machinery has enjoyed disproportionate impunity. But now when the family members of the police are protesting, how often will they raise the baton? Will they pave way for the state to break up their families? That is what Dallewal and Tikait raised yesterday. The farmer langars are serving the police as well – right from the beginning. Will the police betray the very food that sustains it? The way the governments has been betraying the farmers that feed the nation. Does police want to continue finding itself sharing the dais of infamy with politicians?

Yet, if the Haryana government takes a step back, like in Hisar and Tohana, decides to charge the SDM under Section 302 of the IPC, it would have a domino effect on all politicians being able to use police for their vested interests. That is exactly the kind of reform in governance that India needs.

Surely, CM Khattar and BJP along with turncoat, hypocrite JJP that supported the government, will lose the next elections. But withdrawing now would signal the CM’s end of career. That is why whether it is Farm Laws stalemate or this Karnal imbroglio, the BJP has erred in being able to judge the farmers’ resilience. Both should have been solved early. Every day that passes on the protest, the farmers win. There is no end to their ability to arrange resources to continue the struggle. After all, they feed the nation. They are our ann datas.

This entry was posted on Thursday, September 9th, 2021 at 3:44 pm and is filed under Other. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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