Chief Justice of India (CJI) SA Bobde expressed his concern that the drawn-out confrontation was causing distress to farmers, and the situation at the protests was only getting worse. He said the court would pass orders if the two sides remained without any progress.
The court also observed that many rounds of negotiations between a delegation of protestors and several Union ministers were futile till now. He reiterated that a committee should be set up to resolve the matter.
A bench led by CJI Bobde was hearing a batch of petitions seeking the removal of protesting farmers from Delhi borders. Another three petitions also listed before the bench have challenged the three new farm laws.
Farmers are happy with new laws, says Centre
Centre filed a counter-affidavit before the Supreme Court after the hearing. the Centre affirmed that the new legislations were not made hastily. It affirmed that the laws were the result of two decades of deliberations. The government claimed that majority of the farmers were “not only happy” with the legislations, but also found them to be very helpful to progress.
The government said that it has been trying its best to engage with the farmers to remove any misapprehensions and misgivings in their minds. In an affidavit, the centre said that the court must consider the “serious, sincere and constructive efforts made by the central government to engage with the limited number of protesting farmers who are opposing the Act,”.
But the farmers unions are not coming for talks with open mind, it claimed. “Representatives of farmers’ unions came with pre-occupied mind and instead of discussing the dispute rationally they raised placards with ‘YES or NO’ to repeal the stated three farm reform laws,” the Centre said.
About the laws, the government said there was a deliberately “wrong perception created systematically by non-farmer elements” present at the protest site. These elements were using media and the social network to “create misgivings” in the mind of farmers about the new reforms, it claimed.
It tried to submit many evidences that “as a responsible government, it has taken all conceivable steps” to have an effective dialogue to remove any misgivings and to also ensure that specific grievances of agitating farmers are “discussed and sorted out so far as possible”.