Farm leaders leave for eighth round of talks
The ongoing farmers’ agitation against the three contentious agricultural laws entered day 44 on Friday, when the eighth round of talks between the government and farm union leaders are scheduled to take place. The talks, which will begin at 2pm, come a day after farmers protesting on various borders of Delhi took out a tractor march in what they have called a “trailer” for what will happen on the Republic Day. Addressing a press conference last week, farm union leaders had announced a series of programmes, including the said tractor march, which they said will be carried out to make the government repeal the three farm laws. They had also said that on January 26, on the occasion of Republic Day, thousands of farmerss will enter the national capital and carry out a “tractor parade.”
Seven rounds of talks between the two sides have failed to resolve the deadlock, with the government firm the laws won’t be repealed, while the farmers are adamant on a complete rollback. The sixth round of talks, on December 30, had ignited hopes of a resolution as the two sides arrived at a consensus on two of the farmers’ four demands. However, nothing came out of the seventh round on January 4, with a legal guarantee for the Minimum Support Price (MSP) and a total repeal of the three laws being the two sticking points. The government has offered making amendments to the laws, as well as forming committee comprising members from both sides to review these but the proposals have been rejected by the farmers.