Farmers raise slogans during a protest on a highway at the Delhi-Haryana state border, India, Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rejected the diplomatic scolding Canada’s envoy to India received on Friday, Dec. 4 for his recent comments in support of protesting Indian farmers. Tens of thousands of farmers descended upon the borders of New Delhi to protest new farming laws that they say will open them to corporate exploitation. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Manish Swarup

Farmers raise slogans during a protest on a highway at the Delhi-Haryana state border, India, Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rejected the diplomatic scolding Canada’s envoy to India received on Friday, Dec. 4 for his recent comments in support of protesting Indian farmers. Tens of thousands of farmers descended upon the borders of New Delhi to protest new farming laws that they say will open them to corporate exploitation. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Manish Swarup

Delta mayor asks council to stand in solidarity with Indian farmers

Council to consider Harvie’s motion on Monday, April 12

Delta council will consider a motion by Mayor George Harvie on Monday to stand in solidarity with protesting farmers in India.

Harvie’s motion — introduced at council on Monday, March 29 — resolves that “the City of Delta stands in solidarity with the Indian farmers and supports their right to speak out against these laws and any repressive measures against Indian citizens and their right to expression and liberty.”

Indian farmers have been met with tear gas and water cannons while protesting new laws enacted by the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in September that they say will subject them to corporate exploitation by driving down prices for their products.

Those against the acts state that the new legislation opens farmers up to being exploited by larger corporations and that there was very little consultation when the acts were passed.

The acts remove a government-agreed minimum price for farmers’ goods, which are sold at auctions in India. Without a minimum price, farmers believe that big companies could drive down the prices and it could be difficult to make money in years when there is a surplus of product available.

Protests began shortly after the acts were passed and have spread all across the world, including all corners of the Lower Mainland. They are now considered one of the largest protests in history.

India produces about 68 per cent of the world’s spices, with top exported products consisting of pepper, cardamom, chilli, ginger and turmeric. India is also a massive producer of rice, wheat, milk, fruits and vegetables.

Those protesting believe the acts could have major ripple effects for food all across the world.

In his motion, Harvie references Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, the B.C. government, political parties and others across the country speaking out against the legislative changes in India and subsequent crackdown on protesters.

“Lending our voice to support India’s farmers highlights the fact that local farmers around the world are indispensable to the social and economic fabric of all countries,” Harvie said in his motion.

Delta council will consider Harvie’s motion at it’s next regular meeting on Monday, April 12 at 4 p.m.

Meanwhile, Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum said he will be bringing forward a motion of his own on April 12, asking Surrey council to join him in this motion “and show that Surrey stands in solidarity with the farmers in India,” according to an emailed statement on Tuesday (April 6).

“Many residents of Surrey have family and friends in India who have been adversely impacted by the farming bills passed in their ancestral land,” McCallum noted. “The changes affecting the farmers in India threaten their livelihood and their protests have been met with a heavy hand by the Government of India.”

He added with April being Sikh Heritage Month and also marking Vaisakhi, “it is timely and fitting that City Council supports this important issue that affects so many of Surrey’s Indian community.”

— with files from Ben Lypka and Lauren Collins, Black Press Media; and Mike Blanchfield, The Canadian Press



editor@northdeltareporter.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Delta

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A woman crosses 176th Street in Cloverdale April 12, 2021. 176th will not host Cloverdale Market Days this year as the popular street fest is just the latest casualty in the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo: Malin Jordan)
Cloverdale Market Days cancelled again

Organizer says popular street fest will return in 2022

Lord Tweedsmuir’s Tremmel States-Jones jumps a player and the goal line to score a touchdown against the Kelowna Owls in 2019. The face of high school football, along with a majority of other high school sports, could significantly change if a new governance proposal is passed at the B.C. School Sports AGM May 1. (Photo: Malin Jordan)
Power struggle: New governance model proposed for B.C. high school sports

Most commissions against new model; BCSS and its board in favour

Vintage scrapbooks gave way to Instagram and Facebook. (Photo: Ursula Maxwell-Lewis)
COLUMN: Prince Philip just got on with it—to our surprise

Ursula Maxwell-Lewis reflects on the passing Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh

Surrey Vaisakhi parade crowd in Newton, pre-pandemic. (Photo: Crystal Scuor)
Surrey Mounties urge Vaisakhi, Kissan celebrants to heed public health orders

Report violations to the City of Surrey Bylaw call centre at 604-591-4370 or the Surrey RCMP non-emergency line at 604-599-0502

A woman wears a protective face covering to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 as she walks past the emergency entrance of Vancouver General Hospital in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Top doctor warns B.C.’s daily cases could reach 3,000 as COVID hospitalizations surge

There are more than 400 people in hospital, with 125 of them in ICU

Eight-year-old Piper and her family were raising money to help Guinevere, the bearded dragon, get a gynecological surgery. Sadly, the reptile didn’t survive the procedure. (Jackee Sullivan/Special to Langley Advance Times)
Lizard fails to survive surgery, GoFundMe dollars help Langley family offset medical bills

Guinevere, a pet bearded dragon, underwent an ovariectomy on Tuesday

A driver stopped by Saanich police following a road rage incident on April 15 was found to be impaired, in violation of a license restriction and in a damaged vehicle. They received a 90-day driving prohibition and a 30-day vehicle impound. (Saanich Police Traffic Safety Unit/Twitter)
Road rager fails breathalyzer on busy B.C. highway in vehicle he shouldn’t be driving

Saanich police say man was operating vehicle without required ignition lock

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C. Premier John Horgan wears a protective face mask to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. Premier John Horgan booked to get AstraZeneca shot Friday

‘Let’s show all British Columbians that the best vaccine is the one that’s available to you now,’ he said

Doses of the Moderna COVID‑19 vaccine in a freezer trailer, to be transported to Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Pfizer to increase vaccine deliveries in Canada as Moderna supply slashed

Moderna plans to ship 650,000 doses of its vaccine to Canada by the end of the month, instead of the expected 1.2 million

Dr. Bonnie Henry speaks about the province’s COVID-19 vaccine plans during a news conference at the legislature in Victoria. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
P.1 variant likely highest in B.C. due to more testing for it: Dr. Henry

Overall, just under 60% of new daily cases in the province involve variants

The father of Aaliyah Rosa planted a tree and laid a plaque in her memory in 2018. (Langley Advance Times files)
Final witness will extend Langley child murder trial into May or June

Lengthy trial began last autumn with COVID and other factors forcing it to take longer than expected

A crossing guard stops traffic as students wearing face masks to curb the spread of COVID-19 arrive at Ecole Woodward Hill Elementary School, in Surrey, B.C., on Tuesday, February 23, 2021. A number of schools in the Fraser Health region, including Woodward Hill, have reported cases of the B.1.7.7 COVID-19 variant first detected in the U.K. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
COVID-infected students in Lower Mainland schools transmitting to 1 to 2 others: data

Eight to 13 per cent of COVID cases among students in the Lower Mainland were acquired in schools, B.C. says

Most Read