Sukhbir Badal demands immediate promulgation of ordinance to ensure center’s new anti-farmer Acts do not apply in state

Urges Punjab government to declare whole of state as agriculture market (mandi)

Sukhbir Badal demands immediate promulgation of ordinance to ensure center’s new anti-farmer Acts do not apply in state

Ludhiana: Shiromani Akali Dal president S. Sukhbir Singh Badal  Saturday demanded  the immediate  promulgation of an Ordinance by the Punjab government to declare the whole of the state as an agriculture market (Mandi) to ensure that the center’s new anti-farmer  Acts do not apply in the state.

“Instead of being obsessed with Akali phobia  day and night and indulging in petty mudslinging against his opponents , the Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh must  act to safeguard the farmers. The best and in fact the only way to block the implementation of the center’s  new Acts in Punjab is to declare the entire state  a  ‘ Principal Market Area’ or  a  Mandi for farm produce because any area declared as Mandi or (Principal Market Area) by the state government  is exempt from the application of the new  central laws. If you declare the whole state a Mandi for agricultural produce UNDER THE APMC ACT , the big corporate sharks would not be able to enter the state and thus the farmers here would be saved from their fangs, “ said Mr Badal, addressing his plea to the Punjab CM

Mr Badal also asked the Chief Minister to get the amendments made by the Congress government in Punjab DURING 2017 to the  APMC  ACT. "These amendments are exactly the same as the Black Laws of the center against which the farmers are protesting. Amarinder's AMENDMENTS TO THE APMC ACT have actually pre-dated the center's black laws passed now. These APMC amendments need to be repealed by the Punjab Vidhan Sabha. We will fully support the state govt initiaitvie to repeal these."

Mr Badal said that this initiative needed to be taken by the Chief Minister at the earliest,  preferably today itself.  “ There is no time to waste. Captain Singh should  immediately make use of this route by issuing an Ordinance to this effect  before the center’s Bills become Acts and are notified by the Government of India,” said Mr Badal in a statement here today.

Earlier, addressing massive gatherings of farmers and Akali workers  this afternoon in Patiala and Ludhiana, Mr Badal declared that the Shiromani Akali Dal would whole heartedly support the  Punjab Chief Minister in this initiative. “ We urge him to first immediately issue an Ordiannce declaring Punjab a Mandi and follow it up quickly by convening a special session of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha to convert the Ordinance into a formal Act .The SAD  urges every political party to rise above political considerations  to ensure a unanimous passage of such a  Bill to declare Punjab a market for farm produce.”

Mr Badal said that the SAD expresses full solidarity with and support   to all initiatives, agitation, Bandh or any other programme  announced by farmers representative, regardless of  which organization  or party  starts it.

Mr Badal warned the Punjabis especially the farmers against “deep rooted conspiracies” to divide the farmers’ movement by getting some political parties to engage in petty confrotationism against one another  rather than focusing in a united way on the farmers’ cause. “This is no time for petty politics.  The SAD wants to see all political parties   sinking their differences and standing together to support the farmers. The SAD is for unity of all Punjabis in this battle. The whole cadre and leadership of SAD   fully supports every effort by every farmers’ Jathebandi and every political party  in their battle against the Centre's anti-farmer move. Unity of all Punjabis and all farmers all over the country in general and in Punjab and Haryana in particular is a prerequisite for  success in this battle,” said the SAD president

Mr Badal  was here to mobilise the party workers  for October 1 march, which would commence from all the three holy Takht Sahibs in Punjab and culminate at Mohali, after which the SAD delegation would submit a memorandum to Punjab Governor for President of India.

"Shiromani Akali Dal is not just a political party. It is essentially a  movement for justice for all down trodden people, especially the farmers in Punjab. Every Akali is a farmers and every farmers is an Akali at heart,” he reiterated, adding that every farmer family in the state has always taken deep pride in being associated with the Akali legacy 

Speaking further, he underlined, "We will lead the farmers or follow them or do whatever they want us to do to protect their interests."