Mann said that he had already announced purchasing the Basmati and Moongi crop on MSP adding that the state government was also incentivizing the farmers to adopt direct sowing.
Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann called on the farmer unions to stop sloganeering and join hands with the state government to check the depleting water table amid demands for a bonus on wheat and minimum support price on other crops. Farmers from Punjab, who were stopped from heading to the state’s capital to raise various demands, sat on a protest near the Chandigarh-Mohali border on Tuesday.
“It is their (farmers) right to protest… but ‘murdabad-murdabad‘ doesn’t seem nice… I will make everything right, but that doesn’t mean that after two months, you start thinking ‘murdabad‘ slogans haven’t been raised, let’s go to Chandigarh,” Mann told reporters, as quoted by ANI.
Mann said that a staggering program for sowing paddy won’t harm the interests of the farmers but it can act as a catalyst to save the water table in the state. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader asserted that his doors are open for talks but “hollow slogans” cannot break his resolve to check the further depletion of the water table.
In a statement, Mann urged the protesting farmers to support the state government for the cause aimed at the betterment of Punjab and Punjabis.
“All of us should make concerted efforts for saving Punjab instead of indulging in such tantrums,” he added.
On Tuesday, Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Surjeet Singh Phul said, “We have started a ‘Morcha’ like Delhi and will continue until our various demands are met including giving a bonus for wheat which the CM had agreed on earlier. MSP should be announced for other crops if the government wants that we don’t sow rice.”
A protesting farmer claimed that the chief minister had agreed to farmers’ demand for ₹500 bonus on wheat but didn’t issue notification, reported news agency ANI.
“We also demand notification for the Minimum Support Price (MSP) on Basmati, Moong. Electricity prepaid meters shouldn’t be installed. We will go to Chandigarh and establish a Morcha like Delhi until our demands are met,” the farmer said, as quoted by ANI.