Delhi Chalo: Farmers reject Amit Shah's talks offer

Delhi Chalo: Farmers reject Amit Shah's talks offer

Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) members sit on a road, as protestors attempt to cross a police barricade at Ghazipur border during their 'Delhi Chalo' march against the new farm laws, in New Delhi, Saturday, Nov. 28, 2020. Credit: PTI Photo

The Modi government's hopes of an early end to the farmers' agitation simmering along Delhi's borders evaporated on Sunday, after protesters rejected Home Minister Amit Shah’s offer for talks over the new agriculture sector laws.

The protesters are now set to intensify their agitation by blocking all the entry points to the national capital.

The announcement by farmers' organisations came a day after Shah offered to advance the talks with agitators provided they moved to the Burari Grounds site marked for their agitation.

Read: 'Delhi Chalo': Protesting farmers reject 'conditional' dialogue; threaten to block all entry points to city's borders

“The conditions put for talks is an insult to farmers. We will never go to Burari. It is an open jail,” Surjeet Singh Phul, President of the Bhartiya Kisan Union (Krantikari) told reporters at the Singhu borders, where a large number of farmers have staged sit-in protests for the past four days.

The farmers’ leaders also declared that they will not allow political parties to associate with the agitation and deny them a platform to speak on their behalf.

Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar reiterated the offer of talks, saying a delegation of Union Ministers would meet them at Vigyan Bhawan on December 3.

Also Read: Delhi Chalo: JP Nadda, Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh and Narendra Singh Tomar hold meet over farmers' protest

The farmers’ unions were also irked at the Home Minister making the offer for talks. “The attempt to invoke the Home Ministry only acts as a threat to farmers instead of instilling confidence,” the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC) said in a statement.

The AIKSCC also gave a call to farmers’ organisations to immediately mobilise more farmers to march to Delhi and intensify the protests.

“We have decided to lay a siege to Delhi by blocking five main entry points,” Phul said.

Activists of the Bhartiya Kisan Union (Tikait), hailing from parts of western Uttar Pradesh, blocked the NH-24 at the Delhi-UP border at Ghazipur in East Delhi in support of the farmers’ agitation.

Read: Manohar Lal Khattar will hold Punjab CM 'responsible if farmers’ gatherings aggravate Covid-19 in Haryana'

Community organisations in Haryana – khap panchayats – announced support to the farmers’ agitation and declared that they would proceed towards the national capital on Monday to join the protests.

“Khaps will gather tomorrow (Monday) and proceed towards Delhi. We request the Centre to reconsider farm laws,” Sombir Sangwan, Haryana Khap Pradhan & Dadri MLA said.