Why Rajnath Singh is leading the talks with farmers

Written by Liz Mathew
| New Delhi |

Updated: December 1, 2020 3:35:51 pm

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. (File)

On Tuesday afternoon, when Defence Minister Rajnath Singh initiates the first rounds of talks with protesting farmers, the government expects him to pacify the farmers and rope them in for “constructive talks” and find a “middle path” to resolve the crisis, sources said.

The decision to field Singh — considered to be moderate and pro-farmer leader in the ruling BJP — was taken in the morning when Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar and Singh met at BJP president J P Nadda’s residence. His experience as a negotiator during difficult situations concerning farmers was also factored in, a BJP source said. In October 2018, when thousands of farmers had marched towards Delhi as part of the Bharatiya Kisan Union’s ‘Kisan Kranti Padyatra’, it was Singh – then the Home Minister – who held several rounds of talks with the farmers after the protest turned violent.

Last night, the government released an official note saying Tomar would hold discussions with the farmers at Vigyan Bhavan at 3 pm today. In the morning, however, the government decided to pitch Singh for the…

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