Congress reaches out to SAD on Land Acquisition Bill

Congress reaches out to SAD on Land Acquisition Bill

Congress on Saturday made overtures to Shiromani Akali Dal, the BJP’s ruling partner in Punjab, in its fight against NDA’s land bill saying it should “open its eyes” and keep the politics aside in the interest of farmers.

Former Union minister and senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh told reporters here today that several political parties including SP, BSP, CPI(M), CPI, TMC, NCP, DMK, JD(U) and NDA constituent Shiv Sena were opposing the land acquisition bill.

He alleged that the Narendra Modi-led Centre will allow “forcible” land acquisition and “lesser” compensation to farmers through this law.

“I want to request all those parties which consider themselves as champions the farmers’ cause. I want to appeal to all these parties that they should open their eyes. I include Akali Dal in these parties. Although it is our political rival but in farmers’ matters, we should keep politics separate.

“We should know that Modi government brought anti-farmers amendments in the Land Acquisition Bill which is grave injustice to them,” Ramesh said.

Asserting that the Land Acquisition Bill will not be allowed to be passed in the Upper House, Ramesh said it will continue to oppose it in Parliament and outside.

He warned SAD leaders against being “mislead” by Narendra Modi.

“I want to request especially Akali Dal leaders that they should not believe in sweet talks over this matter. Do not get misled by Modi. As these amendments will allow forcible acquisition of land, lesser compensation to lakhs of farmers and dictatorship will rule with these amendments,” he said.

He was accompanied by presidents of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh units of Congress Partap Singh Bajwa, Ashok Tanwar and Pardeep Chhabra respectively.

“SAD leaders till the last time were worried about changes in the land acquisition bill. But what match fixing took place I do not know,” he said.

However, Ramesh said that he had talked to some of SAD MPs and told them that they were being “misled” on this issue.

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