Farmers are able to continue protests on the borders of Delhi, against the three agricultural laws, for the remaining three and half years of the Narendra Modi government’s second term, said farmer leader Narendra Tikait. The protests can’t be “culled” he said. The farmers’ protest has been continuing for quite 100 days. Narendra Tikait doesn’t hold any official position within the Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU), formed by his father, Mahendra Singh Tikait, in 1986. He mostly focuses on the family’s farming activities but is as vocal on farmers’ issues as his two elder brothers, Naresh and Rakesh Tikait, who are leading from the front.
Speaking to press agency PTI, at his range in Muzaffarnagar’s Sisauli, the 45-year-old farmer also said his two brothers and therefore the entire Tikait family would go away the protest if any wrongdoing is proved against one loved one . Narendra Tikait rejected allegations of creating money from the agitation.
The eldest brother, Naresh Tikait is that the BKU president, while Rakesh Tikait holds the position of national spokesperson of the organisation. BKU under Mahendra Singh Tikait’s leadership in 1988 had laid a virtual siege of Meerut demanding higher prices for sugarcane, cancellation of loans and lowering of water and electricity rates. an equivalent year, BKU held a week-long protest in Delhi’s yacht club to specialise in the plight of farmers.
After Mahendra Singh Tikait’s death in 2011, Naresh and Rakesh Tikait are leading the BKU in various roles, though variety of factions have emerged in various parts of the country over the years.
Narendra Tikait said the Centre thinks that it can “cull” the farmers’ protest love it has “culled” other agitations within the past using various tactics. “I am here in Sisauli but my eyes are on the protest,” he said, adding that he keeps visiting Ghazipur border where many farmers and BKU supporters are camping since November 2020.
“This government features a misconception, probably because it never faced such quite protest, but we’ve seen agitations and been a part of those for 35 years. This government only has an experience of facing smaller protests and of getting those culled through various tactics,” Mr Tikait said. “They cannot crush this protest by any means. this may continue for as long as our demands aren’t met. This government features a tenure of three and a half years left, and that we can continue the movement till the top of its term,” he said.
“If the govt keeps saying again and again that crops would be bought at MSP, then why cannot they provide this in writing? They keep harping about giving subsidies on LPG cylinders, but that subsidy is additionally gone,” he said. Mr Tikait alleged that the Centre has done an equivalent to the varsity education sector where private institutes are thriving and minting money while the condition of state facilities are suffering.
“Now they need business houses to store crops, hoard those and later sell at desired rates. Their push is for business and that is the agenda,” he said, adding that farmers are already reeling under the high cost of labour and fuel prices. When asked about allegations that the Tikait family holds land worth many crores which BKU is involved in hooliganism within the region, he said, “There is nothing that they (the government) could find against us then this (making allegations) is occurring . If they find one fault in any member of our family, then we’ll return from Delhi.”
He also rejected allegations of hooliganism by BKU. “Why would we do it? Some even say that we are taking money for the protest. quite 200 of our farmers have sacrificed their lives during the protest. People are donating money even during the last rites of these who have died. there’s no doubt of taking money for protests as we aren’t short on any resources,” he said.
Describing his family’s position as ‘Chaudhary’ or head of Balyan Khap (the Balyan caste council), Mr. Tikait said this Khap leads 84 villages within the region consistent with traditions continuing for ages. His eldest brother Naresh Tikait is that the head of the Balyan Khap, which makes him de facto head of ”Sarv Khap” (all caste councils).