On Saturday, the protesting farmers’ unions have put forward a proposal to have the next round of talks with the central government on December 29 at 11am.
“After talking to all farmers organizations, we are proposing that the talks between farmers’ representatives and the Centre should be held on December 29 at 11am,” Swaraj India president Yogendra Yadav said in a joint press conference at Singhu border in New Delhi.
The unions said that their agenda for the meeting was repealing of two laws and providing a legal guarantee Minimum Support Price (MSP). “The first two points in our agenda for talks are one, a way to repeal the three farms and two, the procedure to bring a law providing a legal guarantee on MSP,” Yadav added.
Yadav also said that letter diplomacy is going on regarding convening of talks between farmers and the central government. “Letter diplomacy is going on. We reply to the central government sent letters and they respond in a matter of hours. The Joint Secretary of Agriculture Ministry wrote to us (on December 24) proposing next round of talks, hours after we sent our last letter to the central government,” Yadav said, adding that the farmers' unions decided to go for talks shortly after receiving the letter.
The central government invited farmer unions for talks on December 23. However, the unions turned it down, telling the government not to repeat “meaningless amendments”, which the unions have rejected repeatedly. They have asked the government to instead come up with a solid proposal in writing.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has reiterated that the central government is ready for talks with the farmers at any time to clear all their worries concerning the farm laws. However, the Centre has made it clear that the laws will not be repealed. The opposition has hit out at Modi, telling him “to shed the arrogance and repeal the farm laws”.
Meanwhile, the farmers' unions have already informed the government and the public what it will do if the government does not talk of repealing the three farm laws during the December 29 talks. “If the government does talk of repealing the three laws on December 29, we will hold tractor march from Singhu to Tikri to Shahjahanpur with hundreds of tractor-trolleys on December 30,” Kirti Kisan Union’s Rajinder Singh told during the joint press conference on Saturday. Krantikari Kisan Union president Darshan Pal informed that they also will organize tractor march from Singhu Border on December 30 and has invited people to celebrate the New Year at Singhu Border with the farmers.