Chandigarh [India], October 5 (ANI): The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on Monday said it was shameful that Union Minister of State Hardeep Puri had insulted farmers and 'khet mazdoor' who were agitating against the "black Agriculture laws" by calling them "hooligans" and asked him to apologise to them immediately.
According to an official release, in a statement here, senior SAD leader and party MP Balwinder Singh Bhundur said it seemed Hardeep Puri had lost his bearings and had become so "arrogant that he had started humiliating Punjabis" just because they had risen as one to protect the interests of farmers, khet mazdoor and arhatiyas. "It is a sad day that Puri, a Punjabi, has turned against his own solely for his lust of power. Punjabis will never forget this betrayal".
Stating that Puri may have his reasons for turning against Punjab and Punjabis because he was totally dependent on the NDA government for survival after losing the last parliamentary elections miserably from Amritsar, he said it was condemnable that the minister of state was also resorting to lies in his eagerness to please his political masters.
"Puri has uttered a brazen lie by stating that he was present during the cabinet meeting on June 3 when the Agricultural Bills were discussed in the cabinet and that Harsimrat Kaur Badal did not express any reservations against the Bills. The truth is that first of all Puri did not attend the cabinet meeting held on June 3 because as a minister of state he is only entitled to attend meetings in which an agenda item regarding his ministry is taken up for discussion. Secondly, it is strange that he is lying and stating that Harsimrat Badal did not raise any objections to the Bills when Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar had admitted on record that Badal had expressed her apprehensions about the Bills," he added.
Asking Puri categorically not to indulge in mischief, Bhundur said insulting farmers and their representatives was also against the spirit of "Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan".
He also advised the Delhi based BJP leader to first understand the pain of the farmer and then issue statements aimed at defaming the entire peasantry.
"We understand you did not get any time to acquaint yourself with the farming community during your last 20-day stint in Punjab when you were para-dropped to Amritsar to unsuccessfully contest the Lok Sabha elections. You could however make amends by visiting the villages of Punjab to understand the upheaval your black laws will make in the lives of the small farmers and 'khet mazdoor". However you will have to step out of your bureaucratic frame of mind to even understand how the farm laws will destroy agriculture as we know it and put the farmers at the mercy of corporates," he added. (ANI)