Amarinder Singh vs Kejriwal In Punjab On Reports Of Farm Law Notification

Punjab AAP said Amarinder Singh and the BJP had "joined hands to make completely false allegations" and that Mr Singh was being controlled by Prime Minister Modi

Amarinder Singh vs Kejriwal In Punjab On Reports Of Farm Law Notification

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh and the state wing of the AAP trade barbs over the farm laws (File)

Chandigarh:

The Punjab unit of the Aam Aadmi Party has lashed out Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, accusing him of being in cahoots with the BJP to "spread lies and defame Arvind Kejriwal" after media reports said Delhi had notified one of the three farm laws at the centre of massive protests.

In a statement released Tuesday night, Punjab AAP said Amarinder Singh and the BJP had "joined hands to make completely false allegations" about the Delhi government passing the farm laws and that the Punjab Chief Minister was being controlled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The AAP, which is the main opposition party in Punjab, said the Prime Minister was hitting back after Mr Kejriwal turned down a proposal by Delhi Police (which reports to the centre) to convert city stadiums to open-air jails to hold farmers who are held back at the outskirts by barricades.

"How can the Kejriwal government pass these laws? If the power (to pass the laws) lies with state governments, then Punjab and other states don't have anything to fear," the statement said.

"If Mr Kejriwal had passed these black laws would the farmers of Delhi not oppose him? Today not a single Delhi farmer is opposing him. Amarinder Singh and the Akali Dal (a former ally of the BJP that withdrew from the NDA over the laws) are misleading people" the statement added.

Media reports early Tuesday said the Delhi government, which has publicly backed the protesting farmers and offered them assistance in setting up their camps, had notified the law passed by the centre in September that says farmers can sell produce at markets and prices of their choice.

The notification, reports said, took place on November 23 - three days before thousands of farmers began marching on Delhi. However, many are now saying the report is untrue.

Amarinder Singh, meanwhile, has hit back and was quoted by news agency ANI as saying that the Aam Aadmi Party had "no shame".

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"Do they have no shame?" Mr Singh asked, slamming the party for misleading farmers by pretending to support them before pulling the rug from under their feet.

"They failed to pass any amendment in the Delhi Assembly to negate the central laws, as was done in Punjab. And now they have officially notified the agricultural legislations. The party's true intent and affiliation has been exposed," Mr Singh said, flipping Punjab AAP's allegations on its head.

Meanwhile, as the Congress and AAP trade barbs (and accusations of supporting the BJP), this evening farmers' reps met the centre for talks that were inconclusive.

Further talks are scheduled for Thursday, but both sides are adamant about their core positions - the farmers want the laws repealed and the centre insists the reformatory legislations will stay.

The farmers have now been given 24 hours to identify "specific issues" relating to the farm laws ahead of the next round of discussions. The farmers have already made it clear that they do not intend to return home without either the laws being scrapped or legal guarantees on pricing.

With input from ANI