Though there are about half a dozen factions of BKU in the state, Gurnam has been active for almost two decades. His outfit is mostly active in northern districts on GT road belt-Kurukshetra, Yamunanagar, Kaithal, Ambala which is also known as paddy belt of the state.
Gurnam Singh Charuni,60, who is the state president of Bharatiya Kisan Union has become the face of farmers’ protest in Haryana today. He describes himself as an agriculturist and commission agent as per his 2019 poll affidavit.
He hails from Charuni Jattan village in Shahbad tehsil of Kurukshetra district. It is common practice in some parts of the state to use their village name as their last name.
Though there are about half a dozen factions of BKU in the state , Gurnam has been active for almost two decades. His outfit is mostly active in northern districts on GT road belt-Kurukshetra, Yamunanagar, Kaithal, Ambala which is also known as paddy belt of the state.
His faction had been raising non-payment of cane dues for the support of farmers and had got him to establish his stronghold in those districts where there was a rich peasantry and powerful lobby of commission agents. Despite having limited influence, Gurnaam remained active in farm organisations’ protests throughout the state and could speak local dialects-deswali, bangru, bagri with equal ease besides Hindi and Punjabi.
His colleagues in other farmers’ organizations dubbed him to be devoted to farmer’s movement from the core. “He never hesitated in raising local farmers’ issues but wanted everything to be done under his leadership”, said one of the leaders from faction-BKU.
Shishpal Singh, resident of Charuni village said that he is 32-year-old today and has been seeing Gurnam to be staging protests, going to Kisan rallies, mobilizing support from the beginning. “He is Jat-Sikh and has full respect and support from the village”, he added.
Recently, he came in news after the 10 September Pipli rally to oppose three agriculture bills where police used cane charge which attracted the attention of the public. He again gave a call to block the state on September 20 which was huge successful and faction groups of BKU announced support for his call. A case was also registered against him by Haryana police.
After receiving the support from all corners and factions, Gurnam formed a Sanjha Kisan Morcha to give equal representation to all of them and unite the force to oppose the farm laws.
Gurnam unsuccessfully contested the 2019 assembly election from Ladwa assembly constituency in Kurukshetra. He kept the issues of farmers as his central slogans during his public meeting but could not garner much support and vote. His wife Balwinder Kaur remained unsuccessful in 2014 Lok Sabha polls. Gurnam was in the front race for the ticket of Aam Aadmi Party but the party fielded his wife at the last moment.