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Popular Punjabi singers throw weight behind farmers protesting against new agri laws


NEW DELHI: With the hashtag #SupportFarmers and slogans like ‘We are Farmers, not Terrorists’, popular Punjabi singers such as Diljit Dosanjh, Guru Randhawa, Ammy Virk, Jazzy B and Gippy Grewal have rallied round to back the farmers in their agitation against the new farm laws and spread the message on social media.

Their support has only become sharper since Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal and the BJP IT cell chief Amit Malviya alleged the involvement of “Khalistiani elements” in the farmer protests and the farmers were welcomed with water cannons and tear-gas in Haryana.

The singers, who have massive social media following in India and abroad, especially among the youth, have voiced their support for the farmers with slogans like ‘No Farmer, No Food’ and asking the government to sort out farmer issues as “farmers are our backbone”. Guru Randhawa appealed for one million likes and comments for the #supportfarmers while Dosanjh said all know who is against the cause of farmers and cautioned against any infighting in the farmer ranks.

On Tuesday, Grewal thanked Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for his “concern” over the farmer issue in India. “I just hope Indian government will also come forward and initiate a conversation to not only maintain the solidarity and democracy of the nation but to protect the basic human rights,” said Grewal. He also took on actress Kangana Ranaut for likening the farmer protest to Shaheen Bagh.

Grewal and Jazzy B also shared videos of Canadian-Punjabi MPs such as Gurratan Singh and Tim Uppal, who slammed the excessive force used against the protesting farmers. Some singers like Babbu Mann physically joined the farmer protests as well. Many of these singers work out of the UK and Canada as well besides India, which has led to transnational support for their appeals.

Nearly all the singers cited their own farming background while backing the voices of protest. Dosanjh, for instance, said he came from a farmer family. Similarly, Ammy Virk posted a picture of the farmer protests and said, “I am an actor and a singer later, son of a farmer first.” Earlier, Sidhu Moosewala had said in an Instagram video in September when he participated in the protests in Punjab, “The farmers are protesting in Punjab. I am myself a farmer. My father and my grandfather are farmers too. I will always stand with the farmers for their rights.”

However, popular Punjabi singer Daler Mehndi, who had joined the BJP recently, and actor and BJP MP from Gurdaspur, Sunny Deol, have remained conspicuous by their silence over the ongoing farmer protests in Delhi.

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