Check facts before commenting on farmers' protests, India tells foreign celebs


NEW DELHI: The External Affairs Ministry on Wednesday asked foreign individuals and entities to ascertain facts before commenting on the farmers' protests.

"Before rushing to comment on such matters, we would urge that the facts be ascertained, and a proper understanding of the issues at hand be undertaken," the Ministry said in a release issued on Wednesday.

The Ministry issued the release following tweets from Hollywood star Rihanna and activist Greta Thunberg on the ongoing farmers' protest.

The Ministry stated that the temptation of sensationalist social media hashtags and comments, especially when resorted to by celebrities and others, is neither accurate nor responsible.

"We would like to emphasise that these protests must be seen in the context of India’s democratic ethos and polity, and the efforts of the Government and the concerned farmer groups to resolve the impasse," read the release.

It mentioned that the Indian Government has reformed the existing agricultural laws "to expand market access, and provide flexibility to farmers. Respecting the sentiments of the protestors, the Government of India has initiated a series of talks with their representatives."

Earlier, the Government had offered to keep the laws on hold, but the same has been rejected by the agitating farmers.

Referring to the Republic Day violence in the national capital, the Ministry said that a few vested interest groups were trying to enforce their agenda on these protests and derail them.

"Some of these vested interest groups have also tried to mobilise international support against India. Instigated by such fringe elements, Mahatma Gandhi statues have been desecrated in parts of the world. This is extremely disturbing for India and for civilised society everywhere," read the release.

Notably, the Union Ministers and farmer leaders have had eleven rounds of talks on the existing farm laws since they were passed, in September 2020.

(Edited by Gabriel G Momin)