BJP leader: Deaths of 700 farmers could have been prevented
Ballia (UP): Launching a tirade against his own party's central leadership, BJP leader and former MLA Ram Iqbal Singh said the death of over 700 farmers could have been prevented had the Union government withdrawn the three contentious agriculture laws within 30 days of the farmers' agitation. Singh, an executive committee member of the BJP in Uttar Pradesh, also called Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut "manchali" (crazy, mischievous ) for her remarks about the country's independence.
"Over 700 farmers would not have died if the three agricultural laws were withdrawn within 30 days of the farmers' agitation. This decision to repeal the laws is a sign of happiness on one hand and 'late latifi' (a late act) on the other," Singh told reporters in the Nagra area of the district here on Tuesday evening. He also asked the government to accept all the demands of the farmers.
Singh demanded from the Centre compensation of at least Rs 50 lakh to the kin of each farmer who died in the protest and employment to a member of the family.
"In case the dependents of the deceased farmers are illiterate, the Centre should grant such families a monthly honorarium of Rs 20,000," he added.
Further, the BJP leader said in case of a minor dependent, the government should bear his or her education expenses. If the dependent is a widow, a monthly pension of Rs 25,000 be given, Singh further said.
He had in the past said farmers would not have taken to agitation had the Centre consulted them before enacting the agricultural laws. He had also urged the government to bring a law guaranteeing Minimum Support Price (MSP) for their produce.
To a question on Kangana Ranaut, who is in the limelight over her controversial remarks, Singh called her a "manchali" (crazy, mischievous) woman.
The government should invoke the National Security Act against her, he said.
The Queen actor and Padma Shri recipient had kicked up a controversy saying India's independence in 1947 was "bheek" (alms) and that real independence was attained in 2014. More recently, the Youth Congress and the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee filed police complaints against her for allegedly making objectionable remarks against former prime minister Indira Gandhi and likening farmers to Khalistani terrorists.