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Thousands of Indian farmers marched in the streets of the capital this week to protest against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, less than a year after they occupied New Delhi to pressure his government in repealing a slew of controversial farm laws, Reuters reported.
More than 5,000 farmers rallied in the capital to demonstrate against what they label as the government’s unfulfilled promises. Protest organizers said that they were demanding that the government guarantee a minimum support price (MSP) for all produce and clear all farmer debts, among other things.
Government officials did not comment on the situation.
The recent rallies come more than eight months after tens of thousands of farmers all over India held a year-long protest in the capital against Modi’s government over three farm laws.
The contentious bills – passed in 2020 – would have removed some of the rules that have safeguarded India’s farmers for decades, subjecting them to uncontrolled free-market mechanisms with intense competition.
The government said that such a move was aimed at modernizing India’s farming sector, but many farmers feared that it would leave them at the mercy of market forces and hurt their earnings, CNBC noted.
After initially refusing farmers’ demands, the government relented and repealed the laws last year.
Last month, the government established a panel of growers and government officials to devise methods of ensuring MSPs, or fixed rates, for all farm produce.