Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday announced that the three contentious farm laws over which a section of the country’s farmers had been protesting will be repealed.
The farmers’ protest, which began last year, garnered support from all sections of society, at home and abroad. Several international celebrities had also spoken out on the standoff. Here are some prominent personalities who supported the farmers’ protest:
The singer, actor and entrepreneur caused a stir in February after she posted a tweet in support of the farmers’ protest. Sharing a CNN news report related to the farmers’ protest and an internet shutdown, Rihanna tweeted, “Why aren’t we talking about this?” The post sparked a fierce debate on the crisis.
The 18-year-old climate activist shared a toolkit on Twitter in February on the protests against the farm laws. The cybercrime cell of Delhi Police filed an FIR over developments related to the post and the toolkit that was shared, citing sedition, criminal conspiracy, and promoting hatred.
In February, US vlogger Amanda Cerny took to Instagram to share a post backing human rights and dignity with regard to the protesting farmers in India. Cerny not only extended her support to the farmers’ protest, but also sought direct international attention towards the standoff. In an Instagram post that was liked more than 700,000 times, Cerny said one “does not have to be Indian, Punjabi or South Asian to understand the issue. All one has to do is care about humanity”. She was later trolled for her views on the subject.
YouTuber Lilly Singh walked the Grammys red carpet in March with a mask that read ‘I stand with farmers’. Taking to Twitter and posting a picture of herself on the red carpet with the mask, she wrote, “I know red carpet/award show pictures always get the most coverage, so here you go media. Feel free to run with it Raised fist #IStandWithFarmers #GRAMMYs.”
The author and niece of US vice-president Kamala Harris spoke out in support of the protesting farmers in India. “It’s no coincidence that the world’s oldest democracy was attacked not even a month ago, and as we speak, the most populous democracy is under assault. This is related. We ALL should be outraged by India’s internet shutdowns and paramilitary violence against farmer protesters,” she tweeted.
After Rihanna’s tweet that sparked a controversy, popular comedian Hasan Minhaj, too, shared a news article seeking to generate awareness about the farmers’ protest in India.
Multiple members of US Congress tweeted on the farmers’ issue. One of them is congresswoman Ilhan Omar, who said, “India must protect their basic democratic rights, allow for the free flow of information, reinstate internet access, and release all the journalists detained for covering the protests.”
Kyle Kuzma, Baron Davis
US basketball players came out in full support of the protesting farmers, including point forward for Los Angeles Lakers, Kyle Kuzma. Former NBA player Baron Davis made a strong remark, saying, “Are we going to address what’s happening in India?… Unfair to those who struggle… the farmers provide a way of living and they need to have a right to a way of life. Join me and let’s bring awareness.”
Jazzy B, a popular Punjabi singer of Indian and Canadian origin, spent the New Year’s Eve with farmers protesting at Delhi’s borders against the farm laws. When asked why he decided to join the protests, Jazzy B said, “You should never leave your homeland, and I am proud to be a Punjabi. Yes, I am from Canada, but you can never take the Indian out of me.”
(With inputs from agencies)