In 2020 the BJP government undemocratically forced 3 new farm laws through parliament. These laws create the conditions for large corporations to subjugate and dispossess the farmers of India.
Farmers in India have been subject to attacks on their livelihood over the last year. If you are an avid social media follower like many people in the western world, it would not be surprising to see an influx of posts regarding the farmer’s protests that continue to develop within the state in 2021. While a mass amount of disinformation has been spread to protect the Indian government and Narendra Modi’s power as the leader of the country, it is important to understand that these protests are completely justified and are strictly aiming to provide fair agreements for the many hardworking countryman that are trying to provide a life for their families. These protests stem from the three bills that were passed in India in September of 2020; these laws include The Farmers Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services, The Farming Produce Trade and Commerce Bill and The Essential Commodities Bill.
While the government insisted that these bills would promote growth for the industry and for farmers themselves, it is evident that these implementations are absolutely disastrous for those who involved in the “agreement”. For instance, according to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, these laws will give farmers the freedom to sell their produce at a price they choose, while also being able to sell directly to buyers and other states without the interference of a middleman. In actuality, the bills provide opportunities for large corporations to lower the market value of goods and obliterate independent farmers financially. Instead of listening to the cries and pleads of these farmers who continue to protest the unconstitutional amendments of these bills, Modi’s government instead spread propaganda around India by positioning the new laws as “pro-farmer”; additionally, Modi categorized the protests as hateful and violent, which is completely false as all the protests have been peaceful as evidenced by the generousity and inclusiveness of the community created by the farmers at the protest sites.
To make matters even worse, the Indian government has resorted to arresting and abusing activists, blocking the internet in regions to deter journalism, arresting people who tweet against the government, and beating, tear-gassing and assaulting protestors with water cannons. The institution has also utilized the Bollywood industry by having many stars who have portrayed Sikh farmers in film roles to promote hashtags such as #IndiaAgainstPropaganda and #IndiaTogether, which has twisted the narrative in the media. Although the government has called to suspend the laws for 18 months to negotiate terms, the authoritarian relationship between India’s farmers and the BJP continues to incite unnecessary violence and hardships for the community.
Every 30 minutes, a farmer in India dies by suicide due to crippling debt and agrarian malpractice supported by the Indian Government. And instead of listening to its citizens, the Indian government vilifies their democratic right to dissent.
India passed 3 Farm Bills unconstitutionally in September 2020. The government supports the bills with false rhetoric, hiding the detrimental effects the bills have on its growing economic, cultural, environmental and political crises, while simultaneously cracking down on dissent with police brutality.