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Farmers across India have been protesting for months. Here’s why

Indian farmers unable to provide for their families have abandoned their homes to join together in staging one of India’s biggest protests. Since November, tens of thousands of farmers have been living in tents pitched down highways just outside of the country’s capital city, New Dehli. Law enforcement has erected large barricades topped with barbed wire to prevent the farmers from reaching the center of Dehli. Violence has occurred, although it is unclear to what extent and if there were any serious injuries.

The farmers are protesting new farming laws that were passed last September that present a threat to their livelihoods. The reforms were advertised as reforming and modernizing the country’s agricultural industry. However, the laws also reverse previous protections guaranteeing certain prices to farmers for certain crops, therefore creating a stable guide to what to plant in the crop cycle. This process no longer exists and farmers will likely have to sell crops to big businesses rather than auction at the Agricultural Produce Market Committee. Farmers claim that big businesses will drive down prices further and harm an already suffering industry, pushing millions into poverty.

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