PM Modi addresses the Parliament on farmers protests

Parliament-India.
Parliament of India. Image - YinYang, Getty Images/iStockphoto

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has appealed to the farmers to end their agitation and initiate talks to resolve the issue while assuring that the MSP will continue. He also appealed to the farmers to give a chance to the agri reforms and said he was always open to change.

Modi while replying to the discussion on the Motion of Thanks to the President’s address, said that the MSP will continue and so will the monthly ration scheme to 80 crore people. Appealing to the agitating farmers to end their protest, he said talks should be held to resolve the issue.

Modi said, “The agri-reforms should be given a chance and MSP was very much there and will continue in the future, and I in the House also say that the ration scheme to 80 crore will continue.”

“The farmers should end their agitation and sit and talk to resolve the issue,” he said.

“There are problems in our agri sector even after record production. We must all work together to solve these problems.

“During the Covid pandemic, we’ve also done record purchasing from the farmers. Thus, we’ve continuously made changes to keep solving problems.”

He said the objections in the House on the farm laws were procedural and even the opposition accepts that the country needs agri reforms.

He quoted former Prime Minister Charan Singh and Manmohan Singh on this: “Manmohan Singh ji is here, I would read out his quote for those taking a u-turn on the farm laws and will perhaps agree with him. ‘There are other rigidities because of the marketing regime set up in the 1930s which prevent our farmers from selling their produce where they get the highest rate of return’. This is what honourable Manmohan Singhji said.”

The Prime Minister said the number of farmers of less than one hectare has risen by 68 per cent and Rs 90,000 crore claim has been disbursed under the crop insurance scheme and Rs 1.15 lakh crore have been given through the Kisan Samman Nidhi.

The Prime Minister said, “It is our intention to remove all those drawbacks which come in the way of India realising its vast potential at becoming one large common market.

“We’ve started a major mission for Foot and Mouth Disease and give special focus to the fisheries sector. We made a ministry and provided Rs 20,000 crore for Matsya Sampada Yojana to gave added impetus to the sector.

“We’ve also started the Sweet Revolution.”

Modi also said that during the Covid pandemic, India has emerged as a ‘pharmacy hub’. “Covid was an unknown enemy and it was impending to save people and the country, and the country has done that. The credit for this goes to the country and not to any government or individual. The people should not joke about the public who lit the lamp in the hope of defeating Covid. The corona warriors have given us a sense of pride. The biggest vaccine drive in the world is now underway in the country.

“The Covid-19 pandemic period has added new strength to our federal structure and the spirit of cooperative federalism…India has seen days when there was a large threat of polio and smallpox. From those days, we are now here when our nation is making vaccines for the world. This has increased our self-confidence.”

He, however, attacked the Congress and Trinamool Congress. “I was listening to Derek ji, he had chosen good words — Freedom of Speech, Intimidation. When I was listening to him, I was wondering if he is talking about Bengal or the country.”

While attacking Congress MP Partap Singh Bajwa, Modi said, “Why he did not mention the Emergency and 1984 in his address.”

The PM said, “The more opportunities we provide to India’s youth, the better it will be for our future. The new National Education Policy tries to provide our youth with new opportunities.

“70 per cent loans from the MUDRA Yojana have been provided to our women. Over 60 lakh SHGs including seven crore women are adding to the idea of a self-reliant India.

“Aatmanirbhar Bharat is only possible when everyone participates in it. The government, during Covid, tried to ensure that the women across the country did not face any major challenge.

We must not forget what happened in Jammu and Kashmir and Northeast. All of these have hurt the nation in one way or another.

“Thus, we have worked swiftly to solve all these problems. India’s strength has always been of finding solutions to problems and opening new roads. There are some people who want to create instability and trouble, and we must not forget what happened to Punjab during Independence and during 1984,” said Modi.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday slammed the narrative against his government on the farmers’ issue as he warned the country against the new FDI that now stands for “Foreign Destructive Ideology”.

He said that the country should not subscribe to this kind of people as these elements have the mentality to jump into each protest whether it be farmers’ or lawyers’ or students’.

The Prime Minister was speaking in the Rajya Sabha during the Motion of Thanks on President’s address. Modi said: “A new type of people have propped up in the country they are “Andolan jivi”.

“Protest is their life-source and they can be spotted in each protest site be it on anything. They cannot live without protest, we have to identify them and protect our nation from them.”

Modi said that they instigate and then watch from the sidelines. He said that each state government is feeling the same brunt as these people are parasites for the country.

The Prime Minister was responding to the discussion on President’s address. The Motion of Thanks was passed without any amendments.

Modi’s speech came in the backdrop of continued farmers’ agitation at the Delhi borders that attracted international scrutiny after the Republic Day flare-up with many celebrities across the border stoking fire against the Centre’s attitude on the movement. The Prime Minister was referring to people who were supporting the agitation.

The farmers have been sitting on protest since November 26.

Earlier Replying to the Motion of Thanks in the Rajya Sabha on the President’s address, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said today scientists are working on ‘mission mode’ as a result the world’s largest vaccination drive is taking place in the country and India is emerging as a pharmacy hub for the world during the Covid-19 pandemic.

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