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Politics

‘Did 500 Farmers Die For Me?’, an ‘Arrogant’ Modi Asked Me, Says Meghalaya Governor Malik

"He was very arrogant. When I told him that 500 of our own farmers had died, he asked, 'Did they die for me?'"

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New Delhi: Meghalaya governor Satya Pal Malik on Sunday (January 2) told a gathering in Dadri, Haryana that when he had tried to speak to Prime Minister Narendra Modi about the farm laws, Modi had been “very arrogant” and the two ended up fighting.

“He was very arrogant. When I told him that 500 of our own farmers had died, and even when a dog dies you send a condolence letter, he asked, ‘Did they die for me?'” Malik said. “I told him yes, since you are the king. Anyway, I ended up having a fight with him. He told me to meet Amit Shah and so I did.”

“Shah told me not to worry, and told me to keep raising concerns,” Malik added.

Malik also brought up the cases registered against farmers during the protest, and said the Modi government must work to withdraw them all. “The government will have to work with honesty to withdraw the cases against the farmers and give a legal framework (guarantee) on MSP. This is the government’s responsibility,” he said.

“But if the government thinks the agitation has ended, it is not so. It has only been suspended. If there is injustice or if there are any excesses with farmers, then the stir will start again,” he added.

In recent months, Malik has spoken out against the BJP-led Union government on several occasions, particularly pertaining to the farmers’ protests. He had even said he was willing to step down from his post as governor

In November, Malik also criticised the Central Vista redevelopment plan, a project in which Modi has taken a personal interest, saying it would be better to build a world-class college, instead of a new Parliament building.

Malik was appointed governor – in Jammu and Kashmir and Goa, before being posted to Meghalaya – during Modi’s term as prime minister.