Mohali (Punjab, India): Bhupinder Singh Mann, National President of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Mann), who recused himself from the 4-member committee appointed by Supreme Court over the new farm laws, on Friday said that there was no point in being a part of the committee as farmers had announced that they will not appear before it.
“The people we are supposed to listen to (farmers) are saying that they won’t appear before the committee. What is the point?” Mann told ANI.
When asked what took him two days to recuse himself, Mann said that he had not been intimated about the appointment till the 14th.
“On January 12 when the decision was taken by the SC, I was contacted by several people asking me if I was the one who was appointed in the committee. I had no idea about this. I told reporters that till I am officially communicated to about it, I cannot say anything. I only received communication on January 14,” he said.
He added that after receiving the appointment letter, he spoke to the Chief Justice and informed him about his position in the matter.
“I spoke to the Chief Justice and told my position and informed him that I want to recuse myself,” he said.
On Tuesday, the Supreme Court stayed the implementation of the Centre’s three farm laws and asked the committee formed by it concerning the laws to submit its report within two months.
The panel comprised of agricultural economist Ashok Gulati, BKU national president Bhupinder Singh Mann, Pramod Kumar Joshi – Director, South Asia, International Food Policy Research Institute and Shetkari Sanghatana president Anil Ghanwat.
The committee has been directed to hold a dialogue with farmers and submit its recommendations pertaining to the farm laws within two months from the date of its first sitting. However, the leaders of farmers’ unions rejected the committee, saying their members were already in favor of the farm laws.
Farmers have been protesting at different borders of the national capital since November 26, 2020, against the three newly enacted farm laws – Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020, and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020. —ANI