US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (File Photo, Image credit: Outlook India)

Farm protests: seven United States lawmakers ask Pompeo to raise the issue with India

After Canada and the United Kingdom, it is from the United States that voices shave started emerging in support of the protesting farmers of India. Seven US Congressmen and women—six from the Democrats and one from the Republicans—have written a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urging him to talk to his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar on the issue. The seven who wrote the letter are Democrats Pramila Jayapal, Donald Norcross, Brendan F. Boyle, Debbie Dingell, Mary Gay Scanlon, David Trone and Republican Brian Fitzpatrick.

The letter written on December 23 said: “As a nation that is familiar with political protests, we believe that the United States can offer counsel to India during their current period of social disturbance.”

The letter further writes: “As national legislators we respect the right of the government of India to determine national policy, in compliance with existing law. We also acknowledge the rights of those in India and abroad who are currently protesting peacefully against agricultural laws that many Indian farmers see as an attack on their economic security.”

Earlier India had rejected similar criticism from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and called it an interference in the country’s internal affairs. Trudeau had made this statement on the eve of Guru Nanak Jayanti. Before him, the main opposition, Conservative Party of Canada and the New Democratic Party had also raised the issue of Indian farmers. In Britain too, the matter was raised in the House of Commons by an Indian origin Labour Party MP Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi.

Protest demonstrations showing solidarity towards Indian farmers have been organized in several cities of Europe. Many Indian origin people living in the West have even travelled to India to work as volunteers in the protests.

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