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Farmers and Tribals from Vidarbha region demands Arvind Kejriwal to answer their 15 questions
Farmers and tribals in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra are irritated with Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) over the selection of Lok Sabha candidate from the Chandrapur seat, who they accuse of being a strong supporter of genetically modified (GM) seeds.
Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti in a statement said that they are shocked with the selection of the AAP candidate especially when Advocate Prashant Bhushan and Yogendra Yadav are working as core group members of the Political Affairs Committee of AAP advocating that the monopolies of MNCs [multinational corporations] and free trade coupled with GM seed technology is killing the Vidarbha farmers.

“Hence we have raised 15 questions to Arvind Kejriwal so that AAP's stand on these core issues gets clear ,” Kishore Tiwari of Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti (VJAS) told today.

The questions raised by Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti (VJAS) include:

1. What is the stand of AAP on universal food security?

2. Do they support open economy and free trade in agriculture?

3. Do they support GM food and do they support ban on toxic food and monopolies of US MNCs in seed and other agriculture inputs?

4. Do they support Tribal farmer’s land grabbing by AAP leaders in Maharashtra?

5. Do they believe in Indian constitution and Indian democracy?

6. What is the stand of AAP on paid news and recent reports of interview fixing?

7. What is the stand of AAP on big dams and nuclear power projects?

8. What is the stand of AAP on reservation to SC/ST in all sectors of society?

9. Do they believe in internal democracy in AAP?

10. What is the policy of AAP on PPP development model and ‘Toll free India’?

11. Why land mafia, builders, liquor dons and criminals are AAP's Lok Sabha candidates?

12. Why AAP leaders are retaining Govt. houses when they have resigned/retired?

13. How do you justify Rs.10,000 per person entry pass for your Nagpur dinner to discuss Aam Aadmi issues ?

14. Why all party candidates are ‘Khas’ when party was formed to represent the ‘Aam’?

15. How do you justify AAP’s policy of accusing all other parties without any logical conclusion. Sometimes you do not take any responsibility to answers peoples questions which has discredited you a lot, please explain?

VJAS said that the AAP, on one hand, is giving ticket to a candidate who is a close associate of Sharad Joshi- a farm leader and supporter of GM Bt cotton seeds who is anti to Food Security Act, on the other hand it is simultaneously giving a ticket to Medha Patkar, a well-known social activist.

“Obviously, there is a communication gap among AAP leaders, which is unfortunate,” said VJAS statement.

Kishore Tiwari said that with the monopoly, particularly of Monsanto, in the sale of GM Bt cotton seeds in Vidarbha, cultivating cotton as a cash crop was becoming too expensive for small farmers.

“Today, we only have to depend on GM Bt cotton seeds since indigenous seeds are unavailable. In a situation where cotton cultivation is unsustainable, food security for farmers is of utmost importance. Therefore, our worry is what if such candidates come to power and ignore the needs of small farmers- constituting around 3 million cotton farmers and 5 million food starved tribals of Vidarbha region,” he asked anxiously.

Recently, the AAP had said, “It is to be remembered that seed sovereignty is akin to national sovereignty in an agrarian country like ours and it is unacceptable that the UPA government plans to sell our swaraj/sovereignty lock stock and barrel to bio-tech seed companies.”

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