Farmers participation in coming Assembly elections: a very sensitive issue
On Punjab elections and farmers participation I have not been very active on Facebook or other social media since few weeks, except sharing links of some good articles/news or sharing some old memories or wishing some friends on their birthday. As I am tied up in submitting a manuscript, whose schedule time has long crossed, so trying to discipline myself. But with all the constraints of time, I do wish to share my views with large number of friends and likeminded people on an issue, which is very crucial in coming days and times. This issue concerns farmers participation in coming Punjab Assembly elections, may be in other states -UP and Uttarakhand too, but primarily in context of Punjab. This is a very sensitive issue and lot many people are concerned about it, who have been supporting farmers struggle for their rightful and just demands and have stood in solidarity with them! These views are subject to open discussion, may be critical too, but not for abusive or irresponsible commentary. The issue is whether farmers should directly contest these assembly elections? As 22 out of 32+2 organizations as part of Sanyukat Kisan Morcha have formed a new platform namely Sanyukat Samaj Morcha (SSM) and decided to contest elections on all 117 seats of Punjab Assembly. While in electoral democratic system or Parliamentary democracy, anyone, fulfilling conditions and eligible to vote has a right to contest. But this right is theoretical or just on paper. The kind of parliamentary system has developed in India from 1952 first Parliamentary elections onwards or even during the British colonial period, it needs to be evaluated objectively and critically, that how much chances of success in this system is there for farmers, workers or lower-income classes or oppressed sections of society. Not only in independent India, some form of parliamentary elections is legacy left by colonial rulers. There was Central Assembly and provincial assemblies during British colonial period as well. Especially after Govt. of India Act 1935, the elections were held all over India in 1937 for eleven provincial assemblies as well as Central assembly….