Bhopal: Six farmers were killed on Tuesday when police fired at protesters in Mandsaur, Madhya Pradesh. The farmers, who have been protesting for the last six days, are seeking loan waivers and appropriate pricing for their produce.
A judicial inquiry has been ordered into the incident.
Internet services have been suspended in Mandsaur, Ratlam and Ujjain due to the protests. The Rashtriya Kisaan Mazdoor Sangh has called for a state-wide bandh on Wednesday.
Reacting to the tragedy, Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Tuesday declared an ex gratia of Rs 1 crore for the families of the deceased and Rs 5 lakh for the injured. In addition to money, a government job, to one of the family members of the deceased, will also be given.
However, the CM quickly turned the guns on the Congress party, saying that it turned this peaceful protest into violence.
"Our government has done a lot for farmers... We have fulfilled many of their demands," Chouhan said, adding that his government was sensitive, and stood with farmers. "Congress party, through conspiracy, tried to fuel the violence."
Taking to Twitter, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi wrote: This Govt is at war with the farmers of our country." In another tweet, he said: "In BJP's new India Farmers get bullets when they ask for their rights."
On Monday, Chouhan had said that his government is taking all necessary steps to address the issues of agitating farmers. "This government is farmers' government. All necessary steps have been initiated to address the concerns of farmers," Chouhan said at a hurriedly-convened press conference in Lucknow.
“A price stabilisation fund of Rs 1,000 crore would be set up to purchase the farm produce at the minimum support price (MSP),” he said.
"People who are indulging in violence are anti-social elements and not farmers. They are trying to defame the farmers' protest," he added.
He has assured the farmers that government would buy onion at the MSP of Rs 8 per kg, he said, adding that "we have already started buying onion in Indore, Ujjain and Mandsaur districts". Procurement will continue till June 30, he said.
Similarly, some cereals too will be procured at MSP, he added.
Chouhan held talks with protesters on Sunday, but while two of the farmer outfits called off the agitation, others continued the stir.