Battle for UP: Farmer union appeals to vote against BJP

The various farm unions, owing allegiance to the Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) have issued an appeal to voters in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand to punish the BJP in the upcoming Assembly elections for “betraying” farmers.

In the appeal, the SKM leaders said, “Mission UP would be carried out against the BJP, not in favour of any other party.

“This anti-farmer BJP government needs to be punished in the elections,” said Bhartiya Kisan Union leader Rakesh Tikait, listing the Centre’s failure to pay minimum support prices (MSP) to all farmers or set up a promised MSP committee, the lack of farmer-centric policies in the Union Budget, delayed payments to UP’s sugarcane farmers, and the problem of stray cattle as among the issues at stake.”

He further said, “When they come seeking your vote, ask them why they have betrayed farmers on these issues.”

The SKM is distributing a pamphlet across western Uttar Pradesh which is the SKM’s main campaign tool.

“The BJP government does not understand the language of truth and lies, or know the difference between constitutional and unconstitutional. This party understands only one language – vote, seat, power,” says the pamphlet which also raised the issues of assaults against protesting farmers, and the failure to punish union minister Ajay Misra Teni for his alleged role in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence.

The UP state chapters of SKM’s constituent organisations also raised the issue of money power being used to intimidate voters.

The All India Kisan Sabha general secretary Hannan Mollah, said, “The 57 UP organisations have decided to set up a guard in villages to prevent anyone from distributing money before the elections, and hand over any perpetrators to the police.” he said.

The SKM plans to hold press conferences in nine major cities in Uttar Pradesh before the elections.

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