- MEA reacted sharply to the tweets by singer Rihanna and climate activist Greta Thunberg about the ongoing farmers’ protest on Wednesday and called it “Sensationalist”
- The govt said that the reformist agriculture legislation was passed by the Indian Parliament after complete debate and discussion
- The govt also said that it is recommended that the truth be determined and a thorough understanding of the problems be done before rushing to comment on such matters
The government today issued a sharp statement warning against the “temptation of sensationalist social media hashtags and comments” with Rihanna, Greta Thunberg and more foreign voices bringing the farmers’ protest to the world with their tweets, and said the protests were by “a very small section of farmers” in parts of India.
The foreign ministry in the statement, which included the hashtags #IndiaTogether and #IndiaAgainstPropaganda said, “We would like to underscore that these protests must be seen in the context of India’s democratic ethos and polity, and the efforts by the government and the farming groups concerned to overcome the impasse.”
The government said, “We will recommend that the facts be assessed and a thorough understanding of the problems at hand be undertaken before rushing to comment on such matters. Neither accurate nor responsible is the temptation of sensationalist social media hashtags and comments, especially when resorted to by celebrities and others.”
After complete debate and discussion, the government said the Parliament of India passed “reformist legislation relating to the agricultural sector” and the reforms “give expanded market access and provided greater flexibility to farmers.” The laws also paved the way for economically and ecologically sustainable agriculture, stressed the foreign ministry.
“A very small section of farmers in parts of India have some reservations about these reforms,” the statement said, adding that the government has initiated talks, “respecting the sentiments of the protestors” “The Government has even offered to keep the laws on hold, an offer iterated by no less than the Prime Minister of India,” said the government.
The Ministry of External Affairs also said, “It is sad, however, to see special interest groups trying to force and derail their agenda on these protests.” This was observed egregiously on January 26, India’s Republic Day. A revered national commemoration was besmirched, the anniversary of the inauguration of India’s Constitution, and violence and vandalism took place in the Indian capital.
“Some of these vested interest groups have also attempted to mobilize foreign support against India. Mahatma Gandhi statues have been desecrated in parts of the world, instigated by certain fringe elements. For India and for civilised society everywhere, this is deeply distressing.”
The state said that the police had treated the demonstrations with the utmost restraint. It should be remembered that hundreds of men and women working in the police department have been violently abused, stabbed and critically injured in some instances.
The foreign ministry in the statement also said, “We would like to accentuate that these protests must be seen in the context of the democratic ethos and polity of India and the efforts of the government and the farmers’ groups concerned to resolve the impasse.”
The statement comes after pop star Rihanna and climate activist Greta Thunberg came out in support of the protest by farmers against three agriculture laws. Also, Meena Harris, niece of US Vice President Kamala Harris, wrote a post.
It’s no coincidence that the world’s oldest democracy was attacked not even a month ago, and as we speak, the most populous democracy is under assault. This is related. We ALL should be outraged by India’s internet shutdowns and paramilitary violence against farmer protesters. https://t.co/yIvCWYQDD1 pic.twitter.com/DxWWhkemxW— Meena Harris (@meenaharris) February 2, 2021
The United States of America and United Kingdom lawmakers have tweeted about the protest that started on highways just outside Delhi in late November.