Mumbai: Criticising the Centre over its handling of tractor march by farmers in the national capital on Republic Day in which several incidents of violence took place, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) president Sharad Pawar on Tuesday said that the government should have maintained law and order.
He also said protesting farmers should go back to their villages and should not give any opportunity to the government to blame them.
"I think this is time now you (protesting farmers) should go back to your respective villages and should not give any opportunity to government to blame you (protesting farmers)," he said.
"Nobody will support whatever happened today but the reason behind it cannot be ignored either. Those sitting calmly grew angry, the Centre didn't fulfil its responsibility. As restraint ended, the tractor march was taken out. Centre's responsibility was to keep law and order in control but they failed," he added.
The NCP leader said farmers from Punjab, Haryana, and western Uttar Pradesh held a protest in a disciplined manner but the government didn't take them "seriously". He called upon the government to "act maturely" and take the right decision.
Pawar accused the Centre of "haste" in passing the farm laws and said these were passed "without detailed discussion" in the Parliament despite demands by opposition parties. "The bills could have been discussed by a select committee, but that did not happen," he said.
"I had mentioned in my speech yesterday that the discussion was going on about the agricultural laws. The discussion is underway since 2003. When I was the union agriculture minister we had worked while taking everyone in confidence into the matter. If the government had sent the bills to select committee, the new farm laws would not have caused so much ruckus," he added.
Several incidents of violence took place in the national capital during the tractor rally.