Arvind Kejriwal’s visit was ostensibly to take stock of the arrangements made by the Delhi government for agitating farmers: sources
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday morning reached the Singhu border nestled between the Capital and Haryana with members of his Cabinet.
He claimed that the Delhi government had to “fend off pressure” from several quarters to ensure that a “plan” to “end the agitation” by lodging agitating farmers at Delhi stadiums did not materialise.
With the exception of Environment Minister Gopal Rai, who is being treated for COVID-19, all of Mr. Kejriwal’s Cabinet colleagues were part of the delegation.
Last week, the AAP government announced that it supported the call for a national bandh called by protesting farmers on December 8.
According to government sources, Mr. Kejriwal’s visit was ostensibly to take stock of the arrangements made by the Delhi government for agitating farmers at the protest site.
“I have come here to take stock of the arrangements made by the Delhi government for farmers who are agitating for their rights,” Mr. Kejriwal told reporters.
“What the farmers are demanding is just. We have been with them since the beginning. We even refused permission to allow them to be lodged in temporary jails in stadiums.”
The Chief Minister also spoke to a few farmers and asked them whether the arrangements made for them were sufficient.
Mr. Kejriwal alleged that the Delhi government confronted “pressure” from several quarters to lodge farmers in city stadiums but did not relent.
“We have been with them since the beginning. We knew the plan was to allow farmers to come to Delhi and lodge them in temporary jails but did not allow it,” he alleged.
“I received several phone calls asking me to give permission but I refused. The plan was to assail the farmers’ movement but we chose to listen to our conscience,” he said.