Farmers’ Stir: Parkash Singh Badal returns Padma Vibhushan
Badal writes to President Ram Nath Kovind.
TNI Bureau: Veteran Akali Dal leader and former Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has decided to return the Padma Vibhushan award received in 2015, saying the Government of India has betrayed the farmers with the new farm laws.
Badal has written to President Ram Nath Kovind on his desire to return the coveted award – 2nd highest civilian honour in the country after Bharat Ratna.
“I feel so poor that I don’t have much else to sacrifice to express solidarity with the farmers’ cause”, he said while returning the award.
“I owe everything to farmers. Whatever I am today, is because of them. There is no point of holding on to honours when the farmers are dishonoured. I am deeply pained by the betrayal on assurances given to farmers to address their apprehensions,” said Badal.
Parkash Singh Badal, once a trusted ally of BJP, has come down heavily on the Centre for “creating a perception” that farmers are pursuing a separatist agenda. He also warned the forces that seek to malign the farmers using communal narratives.