No record of farmers dying during protests, so no question of compensation: Centre tells Parliament
The Centre was responding to a question regarding deaths of farmers and whether the government was intending to provide compensation to the families of such farmers
Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar told Parliament on Wednesday that the Centre has “no record” of farmers who lost their lives during the over-year-long protests.
In response to a series of questions related to the farmers’ protest, Tomar said that due to lack of records the “question does not arise” on providing compensation to the families of those who died during the agitation.
The Centre was responding to a question regarding the deaths of farmers and whether the government was intending to provide compensation to the families of such farmers.
The Union government does not have records on the number of cases registered against farmers either, Tomar said in his reply.
This comes as Congress leader Manish Tewari demanded that the government should provide Rs 5 crore compensation to the families of the farmers who died during the farm laws agitation and also accept other demands of the tillers, including a legal guarantee for MSP.
Speaking in the Lok Sabha during the Zero Hour on Wednesday, the MP from Punjab's Anandpur Sahib said it was because of the "historic" farmers' movement that the "three black farm laws" have been taken back.
He said that over 700 framers had been "martyred" in the farmers' movement.
"I would like to demand from the government a list of those farmers (who died in the agitation) be prepared and their families be given Rs 5 crore compensation each. The farmers' demand of (legal guarantee for) MSP as well as other demands, the government should do justice to them," he said.
Congress MP from Fatehgarh Sahib, Amar Singh also demanded that a law be made providing a legal guarantee for MSP.
Rashtriya Loktantrik Party's Hanuman Beniwal demanded that the cases that have been filed against the farmers during the farm laws agitation be taken back.
Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge criticised the government’s response. He described the Centre’s reply as an insult to the 700 farmers who lost their lives while protesting against the farm laws, ANI reported.
"If Govt doesn't have a record of 700 people then how they had collected data of lakhs of people during pandemic. Over 50 lakh people lost their lives due to #COVID19 in the last 2 years but according to govt, only 4 lakh people died due to the virus," Mallikarjun Kharge added
— ANI (@ANI) December 1, 2021
The Samyukt Kisan Morcha last month had written an open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking immediate resumption of talks with the government over their six demands, including a law guaranteeing minimum support price (MSP) for all farmers.
The umbrella body of farmers' unions has also sought withdrawal of cases against farmers, building a memorial for the protesters who lost their lives during the agitation and arrest of Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra, whose son is an accused in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence.
With inputs from agencies
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