Other States

NDA constituent RLP threatens to quit alliance over farm laws

The Rashtriya Loktantrik Party (RLP), a constituent of National Democratic Alliance (NDA) from Rajasthan, on Monday expressed unhappiness over the Centre’s agriculture sector laws and said it would “reconsider its alliance” with the Bharatiya Janata Party if the new legislations were not withdrawn.

In an apparent attempt to put pressure on the BJP after the Shiromani Akali Dal broke off ties with the ruling party at the Centre, RLP chief and Nagaur MP Hanuman Beniwal took exception to the Centre’s stand on farm laws in a letter addressed to Home Minister Amit Shah. He said the Acts were clearly not in the interest of farmers.

“Your attention is drawn to the farmers’ protest against the three laws... I would request you to take immediate action to withdraw these legislations. The ‘Annadata’' [food providers] of the country are agitating in this extreme cold amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which does not reflect well on the government,” Mr. Beniwal said, while addressing Mr. Shah as the NDA chairperson.

The RLP chief also demanded that the NDA government implement all recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission and hold a dialogue with the farmers in Delhi in the right spirit.

The party, which enjoys considerable support in Rajasthan's Jat-dominated areas, has one seat in the Lok Sabha and three members in the State Assembly.

“Though the RLP is a constituent party of the NDA, its strength lies in Kisan [farmers] and Jawan [soldiers]. If a prompt action is not taken in this matter, we will have to rethink about our alliance in the interest of farmers,” Mr. Beniwal said.

Mr. Beniwal, who has been making strong remarks on the subject through social media during the last few days, said on Monday that he had given his “last warning” to the BJP through his letter. He had formed the RLP in 2018 with the support of Jats, who constitute a politically powerful community in more than a dozen Lok Sabha constituencies in the State.

‘Don’t ill-treat’

“We are with the farmers and [will] march to Delhi, if required. The Prime Minister and Mr. Shah should hold talks with the farmers and provide them space to hold dharna in the Capital. If any kind of ill-treatment is done with them, the farmers of the entire country will be on streets and will lay siege to Delhi,” he said.

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Printable version | Jan 17, 2021 9:24:03 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/nda-constituent-rlp-threatens-to-quit-alliance-over-farm-laws/article33216288.ece

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