What has the world been saying about the farmers’ protests happening in India? Read here to find out.
Written by: Halima K
What does social media have to say?
250 tweets and accounts that belonged to protestors and rally leaders, such as Kisan Sabha, were deleted or suspended having been reported by government officials as a “threat to public security”. I’m not sure how a 40-character tweet could intimidate a whole nation's security, but it’s interesting to see how freedom of speech can be seen as a threat.
However, Twitter has recently unblocked these allowing a voice for the protestors. It’s refreshing to see the platform display some common sense.
There has been public support from celebrities such as Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar who wrote:
“Farmers constitute an extremely important part of our country. And the efforts being undertaken to resolve their issues are evident. Let’s support an amicable resolution”.
Popstar Rihanna has also voiced her concerns on the little exposure the problem has been receiving urging her followers to spread the message. This is something anyone can do no matter how small their platform may be!
What about the global response?
America — CNN reports focused primarily on how internet cuts were used to maintain “public safety” and “advertising public emergency”. No surprise there.
But, American citizens took to the roads to express their support for India’s farmers. On the 28th of January 2021, around 300 Sikhs and other overseas Indians participated in a rally in Melbourne. Rajbir Singh, owner of a small transport business states:
“The new laws will bring economic devastation to our motherland, and we can’t simply close our eyes and pretend that everything is alright back home.”
UK — After Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi expressed his concerns about the violent reaction from the Indian government towards peaceful protestors. Boris Johnson considered the protest as a cross-border issue between India and Pakistan.
It’s difficult to believe our very own PM could remain so ignorant.
This led to an outcry of tweets by MPs from Indian backgrounds bewildered by the PM’s response, which is completely understandable. Do better Boris.
Canada — PM Justin Trudeau was the first leader to publicly talk about the protest, voicing his views on the news coming out of India, good on him! He said his country will “always be there to defend the rights of peaceful protest.”
Pakistan — Following Canada, federal minister of science and technology, Fawad Chaudhry tweeted:
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We must speak up against the injustice done to Punjabi farmers. Modi policies are a threat to the whole region”
I couldn’t agree with his words more.
It’s time we take a stand and support India’s farmers, just because our PM remains ignorant, doesn’t mean that we have to.
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