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Our Troubles Similar From Kashmir to Kanyakumari, Say Farmers’ Bodies During ‘Kisan Adhikar Yatra’

The farmers, who are on a nationwide ‘Kisan Adhikar Yatra’, are also demanding a one-time loan waiver, fixing of pension and inclusion of fruits, vegetables and milk in the MSP ambit.

Vivek Trivedi | News18

Updated:August 6, 2018, 9:31 PM IST
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Our Troubles Similar From Kashmir to Kanyakumari, Say Farmers’ Bodies During ‘Kisan Adhikar Yatra’
Illustration by Mir Suhail/News18.com
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Bhopal: Expressing anguish over the woes of farmers across the country, the Rashtriya Kisan Mahasangh (RKM) said the distress was maximum among the farmers of Madhya Pradesh.

The core committee members of the RKM — an umbrella organisation of 132 farmers’ bodies — accused the government of betraying peasants and not offering them the Minimum Support Price (MSP) as promised during Anna Hazare’s agitation.

The farmers, who are on a nationwide ‘Kisan Adhikar Yatra’, are also demanding a one-time loan waiver, fixing of pension and inclusion of fruits, vegetables and milk in the MSP ambit.

“Farmers across the country, from Kashmir to Kanyakumari, are facing troubles alike. The farmers of Kashmir, who never faced any issues post 1947, are now part of this agitation,” said farmer leader Shivkumar Sharma ‘Kakkaji’.

‘Kakkaji’ said five lakh farmers had committed suicide in India in the past 20 years and farm income had grown by a mere 0.44%. He also rubbished accusations of political affinity.

Echoing Kakkaji’s sentiment, the RKM’s Punjab unit president Jagjit Singh Dallewala accused the Modi government of betraying farmers by not giving them the promised MSP.

“The situation is worse in MP as the state government failed to implement MSP and instead introduced Bhavantar, which left farmers at the mercy of traders who minted money by creating artificial slump in prices,” he said.

“I am sure MP farmers are so anguished that they will lead the farmers’ rebellion,” he added.

Claiming that there had been no price revision for farm products since 1990 despite increasing cost of fuel, labour and fertilisers, farm union leader from Kashmir Hamid Malik alleged that politicians exploited the sentiments of Kashmiris but no one had done anything to improve the rates of agricultural products.

Malik said apples, which sell at Rs 150-200 per kg outside the Valley, fetch only Rs 18-20 per kg in Kashmir’s markets. The 40-year-old, who owns an apple farm close to Srinagar, claimed there had been persistent farmers’ protests in Kashmir over the past one year.

Representing the farmers of Kerala, KV Biju told News18 that they were at the receiving end soon after the free trade agreement ensured influx of cash crops such as tea, coffee, rubber, cashew nuts and coconuts.

The ‘Kisan Adhikar Yatra’, which started on July 26 from Kashmir’s Handwara, has planned 25 public meetings in different states and is scheduled to culminate in Kanyakumari on August 19.

(Get detailed and live results of each and every seat of the state Assemblies in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Telangana, Chhattisgarh and Mizoram to know which candidate/party is leading or trailing and to know who has won and who has lost and by what margin. Our one-of-its-kind Election Analytics Centre lets you put on the psephologist's hat. Know interesting facts and trivia about the elections. Elections = News18)
| Edited by: Sana Fazili
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