Chandigarh: Amid continued protests by farmers against the new farm laws, Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh on Tuesday (October 20) asserted that he was prepared to resign or be dismissed rather than “bow to injustice” towards Punjab’s farmers.  

The CM also warned of possible disruption of the state’s peace and threat to national security as a result of the farm laws, pointing out that nobody can tolerate religious hurt and attack on livelihood.

“I am not afraid of resigning. I am not afraid of my government being dismissed. But I will not let the farmers suffer or be ruined,” the chief minister said on the second day of the special session of the Vidhan Sabha, adding that he had chosen to quit at the time of Operation Blue Star instead of “accepting or endorsing the assault on Sikh ethos”.

Cautioning the Centre against allowing the situation to get out of hand, Amarinder said if the farm laws are not revoked, angry youth can come out on the streets to join the farmers, leading to chaos. The way things are going on at present, the situation has the potential to disturb the peaceful atmosphere, he warned.

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He pointed out that this is what had happened in the 80s and 90s. Both China and Pakistan will collude and try to take advantage of any disruption of the state’s peace, which would pose a serious threat to national security, he added.

The bills, which are part of the state government’s multi-pronged approach to safeguard the interest of the farmers and the identity of Punjab, seek to amend the Farmers Produce Facilitation Act, the Farmers Agreement and Farm Services Act, the Essential Commodities Act, and the Civil Procedure Code, with the overarching aim of countering the disastrous effects of what Amarinder termed as “legislation by subterfuge.”

While reiterating his support to the agitating farmers, the CM also appealed to them to end the ‘Rail Roko’ agitation and blockades and allow movement of essential commodities. The CM said with power generation at a precarious low, no urea for fertilisers and no space in godown for fresh paddy arrivals, the state was going through a tough times.

“We have stood with you, now it is your turn to stand with us,” he said in an appeal to the farmers.