Farmers’ Agitation is Victory of Democracy: Jamaat-e-Islami Hind

NEW DELHI – Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) Vice President Prof. Salim Engineer has called the farmers’ agitation, a victory of democracy that signified the value of the people’s opinion in a democratic country.

In a media statement issued on Saturday, the JIH Vice President underlined that the farmers protest movement was a show of strength of unity in diversity that reflected the communal harmony of the country and the people of all faiths, castes and regions united in the fight for their rights.

Noting that the farmers have not withdrawn their agitation but merely suspended it, Salim said, “as they do not have confidence and trust in the government. This loss of confidence and trust is quite concerning and is a result of the past policies and experience with the government. In a vibrant democracy, the opinion of people must be valued and no decision by the government should be declared as irrevocable, which is in direct contrast to authoritarianism. The government is compelled to value the opinion of people. However, it is important to decipher if the decision by the government to roll back the unjust farm laws was due to electoral compulsions or guided by the democratic and constitutional spirit. The decision should have been taken much earlier by the government if it had valued the interests of the farmers at heart. Such a belated decision to repeal farm laws appears to have been forced on the government as it saw possible defeat in forthcoming assembly elections. Hence, the decision of the government does not gain back the confidence of farmers.”

Asking the government not to look at the farm laws from the perspective of farming and agriculture, Prof Salim has said that rather it is going to impact the entire economy of the country as the agriculture sector still accounts for a substantial percentage of GDP and is the nation’s largest source of livelihoods.

Urging the government to come out with policies that leverage the needs and wants of the market with the requirements of an agrarian economy, the JIH Vice President said, “it appears that we are blindly following the diktats of international bodies and agencies by forgoing national interests. A holistic approach for the solution of farmers’ problems is required.”

Lauding farmers’ agitation, Prof Salim noted that it gave impetus and proved that even today the peaceful agitations and expression of legitimate demands within the framework of democracy and the Constitution can become a vehicle to convey the demands in front of the government. Asserting that the farmers’ issues should be debated at all levels and lessons must be drawn from their agitation, he added that the biggest lesson is that in a democracy the opinion of people should be valued.


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