“Not Farmers, They Are Hooligans”: Meenakshi Lekhi’s Remark On Protests Draws Backlash

Meenakshi Lekhi On Farm Protests
Remarks by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Meenakshi Lekhi on farm protests outside the Parliament on Thursday have prompted backlash online. She reportedly said the protestors were “not farmers, they are hooligans.”

As per ANI which quoted Lekhi, the recently appointed Minister of State for External Affairs, was referring to the alleged attack on a journalist covering the protests in the heart of the national capital, where farmers demanding a repeal of three new and controversial farm laws passed by the centre gathered today.

“They are not farmers, they are hooligans… These are criminal acts. What happened on January 26 was also shameful criminal activities,” Lekhi reportedly saidSee below: 

Instances of chaos had been reported on January 26 this year, when a group of protestors broke away from the marching route and stormed the Red Fort.

As per some reports and videos doing the rounds online, a cameraman for News18 named Nagendra has allegedly been injured during the farmers’ protest in Delhi on July 22.

The ‘attack’ has invited strong criticism from members of the ruling party, with BJP’s IT cell head Amit Malviya tweeting, “There is little doubt that this protest is not what it portrays to be.”

After Meenakshi Lekhi On Farm Protests, Chief Tikait Responds

Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Rakesh Tikait, who is leading the coalition of protestors, responded to Lekhi’s remarks on the agitation saying, “Hooligans are the ones who have nothing. It is wrong to make such remarks for farmers. We are farmers, not hooligans. Farmers are ‘anndatas’ of the land.”

The farmers today were joined by Congress leaders, including Rahul Gandhi, during their gathering near the Parliament premises.

State authorities that have allowed for the Kisan Sansad to convene between July 22 and August 9 have done so with COVID-19 protocol restrictions. Only a limit of 206 farmers per day have been given permission to collect for the ‘Farmers Parliament.’