Farmers’ protest has heated the political environment in India. At Delhi border farmers are protesting against the Modi government’s New Farm Laws. On the one hand, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his entire cabinet are trying to convince farmers that the new laws are a boon. On the other hand, farmers think otherwise. Congress party, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Left parties are supporting the farmers. To talk about this and many other important issues journalist Anurag Sason has an in-depth conversation with a young, energetic Congress party leader, Hardik Patel.
Here are some excerpts from the exclusive interview (Scroll down to watch the complete interview/पूरा साक्षात्कार देखने के लिए नीचे स्क्रॉल करें)
Q1) How do you see farmers’ protest against the New Farm Laws?
Hardik Patel: After a long time, India witnessed such a kind of protest by farmers. These New Farm Laws must clearly mention that there will be no threat to MSP and Mandis. Modi government must listen to farmers’ demands.
Q2) Modi government says that New Farm Laws will benefit farmers. If the new laws are so good then why farmers are protesting? Why government is unable to make them understand?
Hardik Patel: See earlier whenever any bill was passed by the central government it was done after consultation with the opposition parties. Now, the present government is passing bills as per its will.
It would have been better if the Modi government had implemented the Swaminathan Report. It is time to strengthen farmers.
Q3) Government of India is linking farmers’ protest with opposition. Your take as an opposition leader.
Hardik Patel: If that is so, then was the Anna Hazare protest linked to BJP? Are the protests during the Congress government linked to BJP or RSS? The agitation is by farmers and we are just supporting them.
Q4) BJP is saying that what they have done for the farmer isn’t done by any other political parties in the past. Your reaction to this.
Hardik Patel: Modi government has done nothing but false promises. BJP promised that it will implement the Swaminathan Report. However, on the contrary, they have forced three black laws. Saffron party promised farm loan waivers. Nothing done on this front too.
Q5) What do you think-how this farmers protest will end? Will the government accept farmers’ demands or the farmers will be persuaded by the government?
Hardik Patel: Modi government will try different means to break the farmers’ protest. The present government believes in a divide and rule policy.
My appeal to all the farmers is-stay united.
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Q6) What is more important at present-Construction of new lord Ram Temple, mosque, new Sansad Bhavan, or strengthening of GDP and providing employment to youth?
Hardik Patel: Three movements are most important in India right now. First, employment to the youth. Second, strengthening of GDP. And third, the farmers’ movement. The government must think about the welfare of the people.
What was the need for a new Sansad Bhawan? We already have a good Parliament building.
This is not a government but Sultanate. Why I am saying Sultanate is because Sultanates try to suppress people.
Q7) India has surpassed one crore COVID19 cases. It brought the country to the second spot after the US. Government is saying that timely lockdowns helped in controlling the pandemic. Do you think lockdowns were that effective?
Hardik Patel: As Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi should have concentrated his attention on things like how many doctors will be needed to control COVID19, how many hospitals should be readied to handle the situation, what equipment(s) needed to imported etc. However, PM Modi told people to do things like thali bajao, tali jajo and diya jalao!
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Q8) You come from the home state of PM Modi, Gujarat. How do you see his tenure till now?
Hardik Patel: I have understood only two things from Prime Minister Narendra Modi. First, jhoot bolna, baar-baar bolna, jor se bolna. At any price, convert a lie into truth! This is his formula.
Second, Prachar-Prasar (propaganda). This government believes in using money power and with the help of it showing its Rs 10 worth thing as of one lakh. This is exactly what is being shown in the Gujarat model. In vibrant Gujarat, 55 lakh plus youths are unemployed!
Q9) Should Rahul Gandhi be reappointed Congress’ national president?
Hardik Patel: We need someone who can work for the betterment of all the people. Yes, Rahul Gandhi must become Congress president again.
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About the author: Anurag Sason is journalist with more than 7 years of experience in mainstream journalism. He has worked in newspaper, news agency, TV and digital media. Presently, he is working as Senior Editor-News in Likee app. He tweets at @AnuragSason
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Disclaimer: Interview is taken in personal capacity