Farm laws | ‘Women and men are standing shoulder to shoulder’

Women participating in 'Kisan Sansad', (Farmers Parliament), under the banner of Samyukt Kisan Morcha at Mantar in New Delhi on Monday, July 26.   | Photo Credit: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

Among those who were members of the Mahila Kisan Sansad on Monday were an Assistant Professor from Punjab, wife of an Army officer and a homemaker who occasionally works towards women empowerment in her village in Haryana.

Amandeep Kaur Sandhu (32), Assistant Professor at a college in village Baba Sang Dhesian, said back home, people used to believe that women should stay indoors. But during the protest against the farm laws, women and men shared the stage and continued the agitation shoulder to shoulder. “Women here spoke for their rights and so articulately, one can’t imagine. This women led parliament has built confidence in them as — even if they are pretending — they have become members of parliament for a day,” she said.

The 40-year-old wife of an Army officer, a resident of Mohali who didn’t wish to be identified, said she is here to express solidarity. “Women need to get out of the comfort of their homes and be a part of the movement. I have come here because this is the need of the hour. I am an Army wife and we all stand with the farmers. I am also a Punjabi so that plays a role too,” she said.


Ramkali Jangda, a 57-year-old housewife who works with a local NGO working towards women empowerment in a village in Haryana, said the Mahila Sansad should have happened on day one but she is glad it has happened. “It’s the women who are ensuring that this protest is a successful one. They take care of the field, home and kids so men can be a part of it. Whenever women get free, they spend time at the protests. Nothing would have been possible without our support,” she said.

At the ‘parliament’, speakers and deputy speakers included CPI leader Annie Raja, Jagmati Sangwan, national vice-president, All-India Democratic Women’s Association and activist Medha Patkar. In two of the three sessions, an “agriculture minister” was also to made to sit and speak.

Ms. Raja told The Hindu that three resolutions were passed on Monday. “Women should be given 33% reservation in Parliament. This bill has been pending. We have passed a resolution here. It’s high time it’s passed in Lok Sabha as well,” she said.

Demand for land rights

Ms. Sangwan said the ‘parliament’ was essential because women shared issues on the three farm laws which will impact them directly. “We spoke about how we should be given land rights because we don’t have any rights whatsoever. A woman will have to repay the loan in case her farmer husband takes his life but is not allowed to take loans,” she said.

“Though women contribute quite significantly to our farming, they do not receive the dignity, recognition and status that they ought to in the country. Their labour, hard work, skills and knowledge and their vitality should be taken on board by people’s movements and by our society. There should be well-thought-out measures adopted to increase the role and space for women in the Kisan Andolan,” said Samyukta Kisan Morcha in a statement referring to a resolution passed in the Mahila Kisan Sansad.

The ‘parliament’ was also attended by actor Gul Panag who has been a part of the protest since the beginning.

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Printable version | Sep 25, 2021 4:03:31 PM |

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