Bullet train project: Secretary of farmers’ organisation protesting land acquisition resigns

Written by PaperDabba
Written by Parimal A Dabhi | Gandhinagar | Updated: November 8, 2018 12:08:37 pm

The model of the bullet train coach on display at the Magnetic Maharashtra Investor Summit 2018 at BKC. (Express Photo/Pradip Das/File)

Khedut Samaj – Gujarat (KSG), one of the prominent farmers’ group in the state, which is protesting against the land acquisition process for the Ahmedabad-Mumbai Bullet Train Project is heading for a split. KSG secretary Sagar Rabari has resigned from the organisation and is planning a breakaway group reportedly because of the growing identity of KSG with the opposition Congress.

Sources said that Rabari had sent his resignation to KSG president Jayesh Patel in August. Though, the said resignation was not accepted by the office bearers of the organisation, Rabari has said that he will not withdraw his resignation and will form a new group of farmers by the name Gujarat Khedut Ekta Manch.

When contacted, Rabari said, “Yes, I have resigned from KSG. It was not accepted by the office bearers. However, I am not going to withdraw the same. I had sent my resignation through Whatsapp. Now, I will be sending a hard copy of the same.”

On reasons for resigning from the KSG, Rabari said, “The reason for my resignation is growing political leaning of KSG. I do not want to name any political party. I believe that a farmers’ group must remain non-political. Farmers have a very bad experience with Bharatiya Kisan Sangh (BKS). Today, farmers do not come out in open protests against anti-farmer policies of the government because they do not trust organisations with leaning towards a particular political party.”

“After Diwali, I am going to launch a new farmers’ group by the name Gujarat Khedut Ekta Manch,” Rabari added.

Meanwhile, president of KSG Jayesh Patel said, “Sagarbhai (Rabari) had resigned, but the resignation was not accepted by the office bearers (of KSG) and he is performing his duties as Secretary of KSG.”

On Rabari’s stand that he will not withdraw his resignation owing to alleged political leaning of KSG, Patel said, “I do not know about that. I thought that the issue was resolved amicably after Sagarbhai’s resignation was not accepted. KSG is a non-political organisation.”

Sources said that Rabari is not happy by KSG’s growing identity with Congress party in Gujarat in many of its public programmes. In June, Congress and its leaders were seen prominently in a four-day programme to reach out to farmers against forced land acquisition for the Ahmedabad-Mumbai Bullet Train project.

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