Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday, while replying to the motion of thanks to the President’s address in the Rajya Sabha, said that India was proud of every person of the Sikh community in the country and highlighted that they had done a lot for the country.
PM Modi said, “This country is proud of every Sikh. What have they not done for this country? Whatever respect we give them will always be less. I have been fortunate to spend crucial years of my life in Punjab. The language used by some against them and the attempt to mislead them will never benefit the nation.”
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Modi’s remarks come at a time when farmers, many of whom belong to the Sikh community, have been protesting against the farm laws. Many critics of the farmers agitation have said that the protests were being stoked by Khalistani groups.
The prime minister reminded people how Sikhs had suffered during Partition and the 1984 riots. He said, “We must not forget what happened with Punjab. It suffered the most during the partition. It cried the most during the 1984 riots. They became victims of the most painful incidents. Innocents were killed in Jammu and Kashmir. The business of weapons was carried out in the northeast. All this affected the nation.”
Punjab is one of the states where farmers have protested against the farm laws. He also said that the government was ready to speak to farmers and listen to their concerns.
“We are always open for talks with farmers. I have said this in past and saying it again. We have to convince the agitators. Someone has to do this work. We are open for talks with the agitators — send the old people home.”
He said, “MSP is there, MSP was there, and MSP will be there. Those people who get subsidised ration, will continue to get.”