Hopeful of resolving farmers' issues, says minister ahead of farmer-govt meet2 min read . Updated: 08 Jan 2021, 02:11 PM IST
- The eighth round of talks between three Union ministers -- Narendra Singh Tomar, Piyush Goyal, and Som Parkash -- and the 40 protesting farmer unions to end the farmers' agitation is scheduled to begin at the Vigyan Bhawan at 2 pm
Leaders of protesting farmers will meet the Central Government representatives in the national capital on Friday to hold the eighth round of talks over the three new farm laws that have sparked a furore across India.
Hours before talks, Union Minister of State for Agriculture Kailash Choudhury hoped that a resolution will come out of today's meeting.
Also Read | Virus spread slows but two states still a worry
"I am hopeful that talks will be held in a positive atmosphere and a solution will be found. During discussions, each side has to take steps to reach a solution," Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Tomar said today ahead of the talks, according to news agency ANI.
The eighth round of talks between three Union ministers -- Narendra Singh Tomar, Piyush Goyal and Som Parkash -- and the 40 protesting farmer unions to end the farmers' agitation is scheduled to begin at the Vigyan Bhawan here at 2 pm.
Just before the talks, Tomar met Home Minister Amit Shah to discuss the issue.
Talking to news agency PTI, Choudhury said, "I am hopeful that a resolution will be reached at Friday's meeting. We could have ended the deadlock by now had the protesting farmer unions discussed the issues raised at the first meeting."
There was no demand for a repeal of the three farm laws at the first meeting, he added.
Asserting that the new laws enacted by the Centre are in the interest of farmers, Choudhury said the legislations are just a beginning and added that the unions are agitating against the laws under the "influence of arhtiyas (commission agents)".
"Next, the Pesticide (Management) Bill and the Seed Bill will come. At that time too, farmers can be misguided," he said.
Asked if the Centre would encourage religious leaders from Punjab to mediate between the government and the protesting farmers, Choudhury said, "We welcome everyone. We want a resolution. If they are ready to talk in that direction, we welcome them."
Punjab's Nanaksar Gurdwara head Baba Lakha, a renowned religious leader of the state, met Tomar on Thursday and wished to mediate between the Centre and the protesting farmers.
The protesters have threatened to hold a tractor rally in the national capital on Republic Day if their demands are not met. The last meeting, on 4 January, failed to break the deadlock with farmers insisting on the repeal of the new laws enacted in September.
The last seven rounds of talks between the govt and the protesting farmers remained inconclusive, although there was some breakthrough at the 30 December meeting when the government conceded to two demands of the agitating farmers pertaining to power subsidy and stubble-burning.