Chandigarh: ‘Slamming the BJP for stooping too low to indulge in the politics of corruption, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann on Wednesday said the saffron party’s anti-farmer and anti-Punjab stand has been exposed as they hate Punjabi farmers ever since they raised the banner. Strict farm laws.
“Out of 32 cities in north India, only three cities in Punjab have a poor Air Quality Index (AQI), but the BJP and the Center have lashed out at the state’s hardworking and resilient farmers, blaming them for the environmental menace”, it said. Chief Minister said in a video statement here today.
The Chief Minister said it was ironic that farmers in Punjab who played a major role in making the country self-reliant in food production were being blamed for burning paddy straw while the BJP turned a blind eye to poor AQIs in other states. He questioned the BJP’s silence on the worse AQIs in Faridabad, Manesar, Gurgaon, Sonipat, Gwalior, Indore and other states where the saffron party is in power. Bhagwant Mann said that this reflects the anti-farmer and anti-Punjab mentality of the central government and the BJP.
The Chief Minister asserted that the main reason was that the BJP hated the farmers of the state who campaigned against the Black Farm Act. He said that in retaliation, the BJP is keen to malign the state and its farmers. Bhagwant Mann said that it is surprising that the BJP and the central government continue to blame Punjabi farmers for environmental pollution, ignoring their huge contribution to the national food pool.
The Chief Minister reminded the Center that they had submitted a solution for paddy stubble burning by offering a collective financial assistance of Rs 2500 to farmers instead of not burning paddy stubble. However, he said that instead of accepting this proposal, the Center has flatly refused to bail out the farmers. Similarly, Bhagwant Mann said that a large number of investors wanted to set up bioenergy plants in the state to provide an effective solution for paddy stubble management.
However, the Chief Minister said that unfortunately the Center has created hurdles by refusing to allow the installation of these trees. He said that the Punjabi farmer is totally sensitive about not burning paddy straw as he knows it will adversely affect his family. Bhagwant Mann said armchair economists sitting in air-conditioned offices in Delhi are not offering any solution to farmers but are constantly insulting them with false allegations of paddy burning.
The Chief Minister clearly said that since this is a problem of the entire North India, the Prime Minister must have called a meeting to find a solution to this problem. He said it is a confusing situation that Punjabi farmers are food producers as long as they are supplying paddy to the national pool but they are being condemned for a trivial matter after the collection is over. Bhagwant Mann said that this is an insult and injustice to Punjabi farmers which is completely unjustified and uncalled for.
The Chief Minister said that Punjabi farmers want to avoid the practice of burning paddy straw but the Center has no solution to offer them. He asked the BJP and the Center not to threaten Punjabi farmers by asking them to file FIRs against them every day. Bhagwant Mann said that instead of threatening Punjabis, farmers should show a way to deal with this problem efficiently.