Congress Welcomes SC Observations, Demands Repealing of Farm Laws

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Congress General Secretary and national spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said when the government is ready to make 18 amendments then the law is not good. “Why is the government not repealing these laws?” — IANS

The Supreme Court should stay the operation of these farm laws and hear the constitutionality of these laws on a daily basis because this impacts 65 per cent of the population of the country, said Congress MP Manish Tewari

NEW DELHI — The Congress on Monday welcomed the Supreme Court’s observations on the three farm laws while hearing a bunch of petitions, and demanded that the government should repeal the contentious laws.

Speaking to IANS over phone, Congress Lok Sabha MP and former Union minister Manish Tewari said, “The Supreme Court should stay the operation of these farm laws and hear the constitutionality of these laws on a daily basis.”

He said that the Supreme Court should do this because this impacts 65 per cent of the population of the country.

The Congress leader’s remarks came after a Supreme Court bench led by Chief Justice S.A. Bobde toughened its stand on the farm laws and said the court has made up its mind to stay the implementation of the three farm laws which have led to protests by thousands of farmers at various Delhi borders.

“We do not believe the Centre is handling the situation correctly. We do not believe your negotiations are effective. We are attempting to make the atmosphere conducive by keeping the implementation of the laws in abeyance,” the Chief Justice told Attorney General K.K. Venugopal and Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre.

The Attorney General insisted that the top court should not pass any order in a hurry. The CJI replied: “You should not lecture us on patience.”

Four senior lawyers — Dushyant Dave, Prashant Bhushan, H.S. Phoolka and Colin Gonsalves — represented eight farmer unions before the top court.

The Chief Justice told these lawyers to ask the protesting old men, women and children to go back home.

Speaking to media here, Congress General Secretary and national spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala welcomed the top court’s observations and demanded that the three farm laws should be repealed immediately.

Surjewala claimed that for the last three months “crores of farmers” of the country are agitating peacefully. “While coming to Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh, the government stopped them at the borders of Delhi. In the last 46 days, 65 farmers have died,” he said.

He said that farmers are demanding justice in the shivering cold and by braving the rains in the chilling weather.

The apex court has taken note of the failure of talks between the farmers and the government and has shown its anguish.

“The court said that if you cannot hold talks, then we will stay the farm laws. In the last 73 years no government would have shown such arrogance. Modiji it is time as the Supreme Court has lambasted your government and questioned the failure of talks. He should apologise to farmers, and he should repeal these farm laws,” Surjewala said.

“The three farm laws should be repealed. And nothing less is acceptable to the farmers,” he said.

He further said that when the government is ready to make 18 amendments then the law is not good. “Why is the government not repealing these laws?” he asked.

“And we demand the Prime Minister should come forward and speak on the farm laws and wipe the tears of farmers and immediately announce the repealing of these farm laws,” Surjewala added.

Congress General Secretary K.C. Venugopal slammed the government saying the Supreme Court has noted that the central government has failed to protect the interests of farmers and the government must repeal the farm laws and the Prime Minister should speak over the issue.

In a tweet, Venugopal said, “Now, the Supreme Court has said that the central government failed to protect the interests of the farmers. Lets hope good sense prevails with the Govt. The central govt should repeal the farm laws and the PM should speak to the farmers and offer his apologies.”

Congress spokesperson Jaiveer Shergill also took to Twitter and wrote, “Supreme Court observations and hearing today has completely exposed BJP government’s ‘3Ms’ – Mismanaging, Mishandling and Maligning’ – blunders on farmers issue and has sent a strong signal to government that they do not have licence to bulldoze farmers’ rights and consultative process preceding legislation.”

Former Union minister and senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh took a jibe at the Prime Minister saying its all about ‘ME’ — “Modi’s ego”.

Ramesh tweeted, “The Supreme Court has rightly asked today in relation to putting the farm laws on hold: What’s the ego? The answer is obvious. It’s all about ME (Modi’s Ego)!”

Speaking to IANS, Shiv Sena leader Priyanka Chaturvedi, who is also a Rajya Sabha member, said, “The country witnessed how the farm laws were brought in through an ordinance. How it was bulldozed in the Lok Sabha. Rajya Sabha members were barely given time and how farmers were given empty promises and called vile names. As the protest continues, heartening that Supreme Court has taken note.”

Thousands of farmers from Punjab, Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh have been sitting on protest against the three farm laws since November 26 last year demanding the repealing of the three farm laws passed by Parliament in September last year.

The farmers are also demanding the government to ensure the guarantee of the minimum support price (MSP). Since November 26, over 60 farmers have lost their lives while protesting against these farm laws.

The government and the farmers have held eight rounds of talks but the stalemate has continued on these farm laws. — IANS

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