Protesting Punjab farmers have agreed to end their agitation following a meeting with Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann here, official sources said. A meeting between Mann and several farmer leaders took place at Punjab Bhawan to discuss their demands, including a bonus on wheat and beginning paddy sowing from June 10, the sources said.
The meeting lasted for more than two-and-a-half hours. A consensus has been reached on several demands of farmers, said a farmer leader.
Punjab Rural Development Minister Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal will share details of the meeting at the protest site, said another farmer leader. Scores of Punjab farmers had sat on a protest near the Chandigarh-Mohali border on Tuesday after they were stopped from heading to the state capital to press the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government to meet their various demands.
They had squatted and parked their vehicles in the middle of the road. They spent the night on the Chandigarh-Mohali road near YPS chowk. Among their various demands, farmers wanted a Rs 500 bonus on each quintal of wheat as its yield has dropped and shrivelled because of unprecedented heatwave conditions.
They were also against the Punjab government’s decision to allow paddy sowing in a staggered manner from June 18 to lessen the electricity burden and conserve underground water. The protesters wanted the government to allow them to sow paddy from June 10. They also wanted a notification issued for the minimum support price for maize, moong and basmati.
The farmers were also demanding the government to lower the charges on the extension of electricity load from Rs 4,800 to Rs 1,200, 10-12 hours of power supply and release of outstanding sugarcane payments. They were also against the installation of smart electricity meters.