United Sikhs, an advocacy organisation, affiliated to The United Nations has been applauded by the Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), an umbrella organisation of 32 farmer bodies leading protest at the borders of national capital New Delhi.
The SKM has commended United Sikhs for “protecting the civil and human rights of protesting farmers, and also providing them the legal aid”.
Thanking United Sikhs, Prem Singh Bhangu, the Convener Legal Panel of the SKM, said that United Sikhs are providing great help to the SKM since November 2020 when the protests began on Delhi borders.
“Since then United Sikhs are sitting here and are providing every help to the morcha. I hope in future also, when there will be a need in the courts, when charge-sheets will be field against the farmers, United Sikhs will be cooperating with us,” Bhangu added.
SKM convener held a meeting with United Sikhs Director Parvinder Singh at organization’s camp office set up at the morcha site at the border of Delhi, last week. Both United Sikhs and the SKM have reached an understanding to work in a tandem.
Bhangu had already put to rest the purported misunderstanding about United Sikh's role in providing legal aid. In a June 9 message posted on their twitter handle, SKM had said, “We appreciate and welcome United Sikhs global NGO affiliated with the UN, for their assistance for the farmers protest in continuing their commitment to spend the legal aid fund meant for their cases after January 26 incident”.
“Their legal work deserves to be recoganised. Earlier there was some misunderstanding which has been cleared,” the message added.
“Funds collected by the United Sikhs for legal aid to the farmers have been properly utilized by the SKM,” Bhangu again reiterated in last week’s meeting withUnited Sikhs Director.
“Already we have held two meetings, in near future we will form a team of advocates which they will be providing to SKM” he added.
In January 2021, United Sikhs started providing the the farmers and their supporters with free legal aid, who had criminal cases registered against them by the police after the January 26th Republic Day rally that led to mass arrests and many missing protestors.
In addition to legal aid, United Sikhs, a not-for-profit (NGO) international organization has been providing food and medical relief to the protesting farmers, who are seeking repeal of three “anti-peasantry” farm laws passed by the Government of India in September 2020.
Since September 2020, when protest began in Punjab, United Sikhs has provided tons of food, medicine, lodging and oxygen concentrators to the protesting farmers.
Post January 26 (Republic Day) when farmers matched into Delhi, a large number of farmers have not reported back, nor have reached home, United Sikhs stood with the SKM and had set up a 24X7 hotline on which the inquiries were received from the missing persons’ families. Subsequent to that, hospital and police stations were approached to find out the whereabouts and FIRs and victims’ families were tracked. Habeas corpus petitions were filed too after it was found that a number of protestors were booked and lodged in jails. United Sikhs filed bail petitions demanding their release.
“We are ready to take up the trial cases once the charge-sheets are filed,” said United Sikhs Director.