TNA News English

The sixth round of talks between the protesting farmer unions and three Central ministers was held on Wednesday afternoon to break the over one-month-long deadlock on the recent agri laws. Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, Railways, Commerce and Food Minister Piyush Goyal and Minister of State for Commerce Som Parkash, who is an MP from Punjab, held talks with the representatives of 41 farmer unions at the Vigyan Bhawan. The sixth round of talks between the two sides were held after a considerable gap. The fifth round of talks was held on December 5.

Addressing the media after the meeting, Tomar said two of the four points on agenda were agreed upon. “We have come to an agreement on the Electricity Act and punishment for stubble burning. There were four points in today’s agenda and we have resolved two of them. We are continuing with our talks on MSP. We will meet again on January 4 at 2pm. I am sure that in our next meeting we can resolve the remaining issues,” he said.

Sources told CNN-News18 that the government has offered to form a committee on the farmers’ demand for a legal guarantee on Minimum Support Price (MSP), but stalemate continues on the main demand to repeal the three laws altogether.

The Centre had invited the unions for the sixth round of talks on December 30 on all relevant issues to find a “logical solution” with “open mind” to the prolonged impasse over the three new agri laws that were enacted in September. But in its letter on Tuesday, the Samyukt Kisan Morcha, the umbrella organisation which represents the farmer unions, said the modalities for repealing the three contentious laws and a legal guarantee on minimum support price (MSP) must be part of the agenda. The sixth round of talks was originally scheduled for December 9 but it was called off after an informal meeting of Home Minister Amit Shah with some union leaders failed to reach any breakthrough.

The government had, however, followed up Shah’s meeting with a draft proposal sent to these farmer unions in which it had suggested 7-8 amendments to the new laws and written assurance on the MSP procurement system. The government has ruled out a repeal of the three agri laws. Thousands of farmers, mainly from Punjab and Haryana, are protesting at various borders of the national capital for more than a month against these three new laws.


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