Farmers Protest: Categorically rejecting the allegation of the state government’s failure to effectively tackle the coronavirus pandemic, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh urged the BKU Ekta Ugrahan not to go ahead with their proposed dharna by farmers in Patiala, which he said could turn into a super-spreader of the contagion.
Captain Amarinder Singh said that his government had fought hard to prevent Punjab from going the way of some other states, such as Delhi, Maharashtra and even Uttar Pradesh. Any event, such as the proposed 3-day dharna of farmers by the BKU Ekta Ugrahan in Patiala, had the potential to negate the gains made by his government in tackling coronavirus in Punjab, he said.
Even as he urged the farmers’ group not to act irresponsibly and jeopardise the lives of their own people with such reckless behaviour amid the pandemic, especially when there is a complete ban in the state on all gatherings and any violation of the ban would be highly detrimental to the interests of Punjab and its people.
Such a dharna would draw people mainly from the villages, which were in any case going through a crisis during the second wave of the pandemic, he pointed out.
The group’s action was also completely unwarranted considering the total support the state government had extended all these months to the agitating farmers on the issue of the Centre’s black Farm Laws, said Captain Amarinder.
His government was the first to pass amendment laws in the state Assembly to contravene the Farm Laws, he pointed out.
“It is time for the farmers now to reciprocate by supporting the state government in the fight against the pandemic,” he said, adding that just as the farmers’ interests were inexorably linked with that of Punjab, so was Punjab’s interest dependent on the farmers’ support to his government in the battle against Covid.
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