Many opposition parties have announced their support to the nationwide strike called on 8 December by farmers’ union in various parts of the country to express solidarity with the agitators, who have massed at Delhi’ borders to protest against three farm laws introduced by the Centre.The Congress, the RJD, the Samajwadi Party and several Left groups have all backed the farmers’ bandh call, as have Tamil Nadu’s DMK and Telangana’s ruling TRS.
Opposition leaders from several parties, including the Congress, the DMK, the RJD, the Samajwadi Party, the newly-minted People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration in J&K, and a collection of Left outfits, have issued a joint statement in support of Tuesday’s “Bharat bandh”, which has been called for by the thousands of farmers protesting against the centre’s contentious new farm laws.The opposition parties called on the centre to adhere to well-established democratic processes and norms and meet “the legitimate demands of our kisans-annadatas (farmers)”.National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah (for J&K’s PAGD) and a number of Left parties – the Communist Party of India, the CPI(M), the CPI(ML), the All India Forward Bloc and the Revolutionary Socialist Party – also expressed support for the farmers.
On Sunday morning Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal also tweeted in support of the farmers and the “Bharat bandh”, saying that all members of the ruling AAP would participate in the shutdown.Telangana’s ruling TRS will also back the bandh call, with Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao extending “total support” and urging farmers to continue protests till all three laws are repealed.Bengal’s ruling Trinamool Congress said it will extend “moral support” to farmers and stage sit-ins in various areas in the state for three days. Apart from political parties, the bandh has also been backed by a joint forum of trade unions, including the Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC), the All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC), and the Hind Mazdoor Sabha (HMS).Farmers and the centre met Saturday for a fifth round of talks that broke down over the core issue – scrapping of the farm laws. A sixth round has been scheduled for Wednesday.