Mamata extends support to farmers' protest in North
Kolkata: Trinamool Congress chairperson Mamata Banerjee has extended her support to the agitating farmers, seeking immediate withdrawal of the three draconian Farm Acts.
Banerjee is the country's first chief minister who has come forward to support the farmers. To stop the protesting farmers, police have had to resort to force. They even had beaten up farmers and despite the biting cold, they used water cannons on the protesters.
The farmers are agitating against the Essential Commodities Amendment Act 2020, Farmers Agreement of Price Assurance and Far Service Act, 2020 and Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce Act, 2020.
Banerjee has spoken to the agitating farmers and expressed her solidarity.
Derek O' Brien, Trinamool Congress Rajya Sabha MP, who has gone to meet the farmers held a four-hour meeting with the various groups at the Singhu border, where they have parked their tractors and other vehicles on the highway.
The farmers thanked Banerjee for supporting them. She also spoke to Yogendra Yadav, who is camping with them. Banerjee made four calls to speak to the leaders of four different groups from Haryana and Punjab.
Meanwhile, remembering her 26 days fast which started on December 4, 2006, in support of the farmers agitating against the forcible acquisition of farm land at Singur, Banerjee tweeted: "14 years ago on 4 Dec, 2006 I began my 26 day hunger strike in Kolkata demanding that agricultural land cannot be forcibly acquired. I express my solidarity with all farmers who are protesting against draconian farm bills passed without consultation by the Centre."
The Singur movement was the beginning of the end of the Left Front government, then headed by Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee. The Left Front government had acquired 997 acres of farm land and handed it over to the Tata Motors to set up a small car factory at Singur. On May 18, 2006, Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and Ratan Tata had held a joint press conference and announced the project.
The decision did not go down well with the farmers who had immediately launched a movement demanding that the deal be scrapped. The movement gained momentum after Banerjee joined it. She was forcibly thrown out of the BDO's office at night. She came to Kolkata and began an indefinite fast, promising to return the farmers' lands.
On December 28, the then president APJ Abdul Kalam and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh along with former Prime Minister A B Vajpayee requested her to break the fast as her health was deteriorating. She called off the fast on December 29.
Intellectuals across the board came forward to support the Singur movement. After coming to power in 2011, she returned the lands to the farmers in Singur. A martyr's column was erected to remember those who were killed during the movement that opened a new chapter in the political history of Bengal.