New Delhi: Ministry of External Affairs, India released a detailed statement regarding the farmers’ protest on Wednesday after international celebrities like Rihanna and Greta Thunberg stood in solidarity with the Indian farmers protesting against the Centre’s farm laws.
Anurag Srivastava, the spokesperson of the MEA, released a statement on Twitter speaking about the government’s efforts to negotiate with farmers.
“A very small section of farmers in parts of India have some reservations about these reforms. Respecting the sentiments of the protestors, the Government of India has initiated a series of talks with their representatives. Union ministers have been part of the negotiations, and eleven talks have already been held. The government has even offered to keep the laws on hold, an offer iterated by no less than the Prime minister of India,” a part of the statement read.
This statement was issued only a few hours after international celebrities, including pop singer Rihanna and teen environmentalist Greta Thunberg, voiced their opinion and showed solidarity with the farmers’ protests.
Not just them, lawyer Meena Harris, niece of US Vice President Kamala Harris, have also tweeted showing support for the agitating farmers
Soon after these celebrities tweeted, they started receiving a lot of flack from people online who thought that these people should not “interfere” in India’s internal matters and not talk about issues not concerning them.
Here are some of those who voiced their opinion on how one should not voice their opinion:
This does not stop here, actor Akshay Kumar, who blindly and unconditionally loves our government, shared MEA’s statement. Why is this not surprising?
While some section of people felt that people not from India should not express their opinion, many came in support of these celebrities and thanked them for drawing international attention to the issue.
MEA, in its statement, reacted by saying, “Some vested interest groups have tried to mobilize international support against India.”
In the last few days, the internet has been switched off in some locations around the protest camps, spikes have been embedded into roads, concrete barriers have been stacked up, all to impede the farmers’ agitation.
On Monday, Twitter blocked over 250 accounts of those tweeting about the farmers with a hashtag that was apparently objectionable to authorities.
No wonder that the international attention to the farmers’ protest is nothing short of an embarrassment to the Modi government.
“Before rushing to comment on such matters, we would urge that the facts be ascertained, and a proper understanding of the issues at hand be undertaken. The temptation of sensationalist social media hashtags and comments, especially when resorted to by celebrities and others, is neither accurate nor responsible,” said MEA.
Is it safe to say that the government of the largest democracy is intimidated by a collective force taking a stand against it? Is it intimidated by your voice and mine? Maybe yes.