Why have there been agitations against decisions taken by the Narendra Modi-led government when those enactments have only been for the benefit of Indian society? Are there any real adverse impacts of all these reforms, or are they indicative of the political and ideological intolerance of pseudo-secular people? Or, is this the work of external influences which have now lost their freedom to infuse their narratives in the minds of the general public of India? While all these queries are now surfacing in the minds of people, who are the ultimate protectors of democracy, the unhealthy atmosphere in the country is having a negative impact on the brand image of our nation in front of the international fraternity and at the cost of our people’s future.
Let us observe the spirit of the enactments and policies of NDA 2.0. As far as the farm laws are concerned, there is a lot of debate still going on about them. The farm enactments are for providing farmers the choice of sale point and open up opportunities for selling their produce in any part of our country or export it at the agreed best price without the intervention of middlemen. The sale would happen in accordance with legal binding agreements to fetch the secured sale proceeds for the farmers in due period as per the provisions laid down in the laws. This had been the actual dream of many farmers and all political parties, for decades since Independence, had mentioned this in their manifestos too. Congress had promised private participation to farmers for availing better prices and even mentioned the removal of APMCs. However, the new laws do not scrap the existing APMCs and MSPs.
Moreover, before the farm laws came into force, the Union government, as part of the Aatmanirbhar Bharat package, promised a Rs 1 lakh crore agri-infrastructure fund, with cold storage and rail transportation facilities for moving agricultural outputs from one place to another. In addition to this, the government set targets to establish more than 10,000 FPOs across the country. All this clearly shows that the Union government has prepared carefully for the effective implementation of the farm laws and to give its benefits to the farmers.
According to a survey conducted by a popular media outlet, more than 60% of farmers across the country support the three laws. 25%-30% of the remaining farmers can be educated properly to understand the true vision of PM Narendra Modi in bringing these laws with facts and figures. And there would always be 5%-10% of people under the influence of Opposition parties and political units. The primary loser after the farm enactments are middlemen who have been benefitting from the blood and sweat of the farmers for years as well as the others who are still operating the agitation, even though the Union government has committed to make amendments for issues regarding the MSP and dispute redressal procedure.
Prior to the farm laws, there had been protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), despite there being no threat to existing legitimate citizens of India, who are living in the country, irrespective of their religion. Who then was behind the anti-CAA protests? Who provided assistance to that movement disrupting the peace and harmony of the country? Why did Pakistan and China interfere in the internal legislations of our country? All these questions have become relevant after the protests. Apart from this, the NRC and NPR had been brought into the picture by the “tukde tukde” gang to provoke a section of society even though the applicability and purposes of these are different from each other. Most people who participated in those protests didn’t know this and used CAA, NRC and NPR interchangeably to confuse others. The CAA is applicable for people facing religious persecution in our border nations and the same had been supported by Congress leaders like former PM Manmohan Singh and former Assam CM Tarun Gogoi. Before the CAA, the NRC had been implemented in Assam but only under directions of the Supreme Court. And the NPR is akin to the normal process of the census, which happens once every decade. But still, people had been diverted from these facts and provoked by wrong notions.
One more important amendment made by the government was the scrapping of Articles 35A and 370. This was done to make one Constitution for one India. But Pakistan made a hue and cry at international forums about it, even though it was a purely internal matter. Then a few political leaders in Kashmir tried tooth and nail to go against the decision of the Union government, as this threatened their special status, and the thousands of acres of land and valuable government properties they had encroached upon. But some questions still remain. Who is funding terrorism in the Kashmir Valley? How has it been controlled after the abolition of Article 370? Who is still trying to hold agitations for reinstating Article 370? Whose narrative is to be believed?
All these agitations have been tailor-made. It is important to notice that the motives behind these agitations are political in nature and fuelled by people who hate PM Modi and Amit Shah and are unable to digest the transparency in governance and the quick implementation of reforms. As per a report of the NIA, prior to the amendment to FCRA, huge amounts of foreign currency were flowing into our country illegitimately, without the RBI and MHA’s permissions. Many NGOs were also being provided funds for conducting terrorist and anti-national activities in Kashmir and other parts of the country. Agencies were creating narratives against the interests of our nation and a few NGOs had even funded artificial agitations against industrial setups in India. A few NGOs have also worked on behalf of Western countries to create a political atmosphere in India to suit their narratives. The regulations on NGOs for foreign funding through FCRA amendments brought hardships for unaccounted transactions. Hence, these agencies have been playing an important role in pressuring PM Modi and funding agitations so that their operations can be allowed in India without any obstacles. Otherwise, they will create a negative image of the Union government as per their narrative to influence and operate future governments in India.
In olden days, agitations against the government used to be for constructive criticism to alter policies according to the requirements of the people rather than to launch attacks on the heads of the government. After abolishing triple talaq, the abrogation of Article 35A and Article 370, the implementation of CAA, NPR and NRC, and the farm bills, PM Modi has become a poster boy for good governance for bringing social and economic reforms to benefit the future generations of our nation. And the sections of society who are unable to digest his fame among the general public need to know that their agitations will never override facts or hide the truth.
The writer holds a degree in commerce and works as an FCA. The views expressed are personal.