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Government Using COVID as Excuse to Stifle Our Voice, say Indian Farmers

Since November, thousands of farmers have camped on Delhi's outskirts to protest against the three agricultural laws passed by the Parliament in September 2020. Farmers fear the new laws will open up the country's agriculture markets to private companies and end the minimum support price (MSP) or state procurement system.

To mark six months of their protest against new agricultural laws, various farmers' groups in India have plans to stage a mass protest across the country on Wednesday against the deregulation of the agriculture market through new legislation which passed last year.

The federal government, however, has appealed to the farmer leaders to call off the protest as it could become a viral "superspreader" event amid the COVID-19 surge.

Narendra Danda, a spokesperson for a joint group of farmers' unions, Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM), told Sputnik on Friday: “The government is trying to defame the farmers as spreaders of COVID-19 while it could not provide enough beds, oxygen, medicines and vaccination.”

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