Farmers have been agitating against the Centre’s three new farm laws (File photo)
NEW DELHI: With assembly elections coming up in politically crucial Uttar Pradesh and Punjab in the backdrop of a robust farmers’ agitation, going on for the last one year in both the states, the BJP on Sunday devoted much of its national executive meeting to the farm sector and the Sikh community.
The BJP is also preparing to go it alone in Punjab for the first time without its erstwhile ally Shiromani Akali Dal, which dropped out of the NDA over the contentious farm laws passed by the Centre last year. The executive meeting saw party chief J P Nadda comment on a political resolution, which was passed, that talked about how the Narendra Modi government has helped the agriculture sector and come out in support of the Sikh community, “like no other government before this”.
To woo the Sikhs, who are the majority voters in Punjab and constitute the majority of protesting farmer community, Nadda said the Modi government has removed FCRA restrictions in Gurudwaras getting foreign contributions, removed GST on langars served by the Gurudwaras, spent Rs 120 crore on development of the Kartarpur Corridor, and formed an SIT to find the guilty in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.
On the issue of farmers’ welfare, Nadda said the Modi government has increased expenditure provisions in the budget on farmers from Rs 23,000 crore to Rs 1,23,000 crore, increased MSP on crops, and increased procurement under MSP from Rs 35,000 crore to Rs 85,000 crore.
The party’s political resolution saw a whole section on the Centre’s policies for agricultural development and welfare of farmers.
“In the last seven years, more work has been done than in these sectors than had been done in the last 70 years. Whether it was the improvement of the crop insurance scheme, MSP, farmer credit cards for small farmers, and controlling the prices of fertilizers by extending subsidies…,” listed the political resolution that was presented by the only BJP chief minister present at Sunday’s meet, Yogi Adityanath.