Nationwide protests are planned to commence in New Delhi today and run over the weekend and into next week as
Nationwide protests are planned to commence in New Delhi today and run over the weekend and into next week as protesters demand the withdrawal of an agriculture regulation reform plan.
The farmers are protesting against the governing Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) reforms, which grants private companies greater access to the sector. The farmers worry that liberalisation could lower crop prices, which were previously supervised by public authorities. The reform could strengthen the food industry at the expense of farmers and consumers, leading to the abolition of the minimum support price for certain commodities in a country where food price inflation is already a major economic challenge.
The protests for the repeal of the legislation have become a major political crisis for the ultra-conservative BJP government. Confusion reigns because the opposition-led New Delhi government has allowed demonstrations to continue.
The government’s greatest fear is that the farmers’ protest will serve to stoke growing social opposition within the working class. The government is under pressure and cannot afford to bet on the exhaustion of the movement. Expect negotiations with farmers to resume and for the government to offer some concessions to break the deadlock.
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