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Farmer leaders wishing to contest Punjab Elections warned of disciplinary action if they use name of SKM

Chandigarh, Dec 25, 2021 (Daljeet kaur Bhawanigarh)
Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM), umbrella body of the farmers’ unions that spearheaded the protests against the Centre’s farm laws, on Saturday have clarified that they will not contest the Punjab Assembly elections, which are due early in 2022. This information was given by the leaders of the 9-member coordination committee of the Morcha, Jagjit Singh Dallewal and Dr Darshan Pal.

They said that the SKM, which is a platform of more than 400 different ideological organizations across the country, is formed only on the issues of farmers. There is no call for the boycott of elections and even no understanding of contesting elections. They said that it was made by the people to get their rights from the government and after the repeal of three agricultural laws, the struggle has been postponed, the remaining demands will be decided in the meeting to be held on January 15, 2022.

Regarding 32 organizations in Punjab, they said that there was no consensus on going jointly in this assembly election. They said that it has been decided that the individuals or organizations participating in the elections can not use the names of the Samyukta Kisan Morcha or 32 organizations. Doing so will result in disciplinary action.

Earlier today, in Chandigarh, a group of 22 farmers’ unions from Punjab, who had joined the Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) to protest against the Centre’s three agricultural laws, have announced to come together and form a political party that would contest the Punjab Assembly election. The new party has been named Samyukt Samaj Morcha (SSM).

But the leaders of several big organisations from Punjab like the Krantikari Kisan Union (Dr. Darshanpal), BKU Krantikari (Surjit Phool), BKU Sidhupur (Jagjit Dallewal), Azad Kisan Committee Doaba (Harpal Sangha), Jai Kisan Andolan (Gurbakhsh Barnala), Dasuha Ganna Sangharsh Committee (Sukhpal Daffar), Kisan Sangharsh Committee Punjab (Inderjit Kotbudha), Lok Bhalai Insaaf Welfare Society (Baldev Sirsa) and Kirti Kisan Union Punjab (Hardev Sandhu) had taken a clear stand against contesting in the assembly elections. These organizations have announced to continue the mass struggle.

Bharti Kisan Union (EKTA UGRAHAN ), which is one of the largest farmer unions in Punjab, has categorically announced that it will not participate in the elections in any way. BKU (Ekta Uhrahan) will neither participate in elections nor will it support any party. They have not issued any call for boycott of elections either.

The organisation has stated that struggling farmer unions instead of getting entangled in the vote politics of the rulers should concentrate on the farmers issues. State President Joginder Singh Ugrahan and the General Secretary Sukhdev Singh Kokri Kala of the organisation said that the farmers ‘struggle against the farm laws has also proved that the rights and interests of farmers cannot be saved and ensured by sitting in the Parliament or Assemblies, rather the same can be achieved only by struggle in the open at mass and community level.

The leaders said that still only three farm laws have been repealed whereas the major issues like the MSP and total loan waiver are pending and are yet to be resolved. For solution of these problems farmers should always rely upon the mass struggles.

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