New Delhi, Nov 21 (IANS) Thousands of farmers protested for the second consecutive day here on Tuesday regarding their demands and announced resumption of agitation in Gujarat, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi will campaign for the assembly elections.
Yogendra Yadav of Swaraj India said the countrywide campaign would begin on November 26 from Bardoli in Gujarat.
“Modi is a busy man. He does not have time to meet us here. Maybe, he is busy in Gujarat. So, we will go there and begin our campaign from there. If he has any concern left for the farmers, he should come and meet them there,” Yadav said.
The campaign will end on January 26 as ‘Kisan Mukti Diwas’.
Swaraj India is a part of All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC) — an umbrella body of 184 farmers organisations — which organised the protest here.
On Monday, over 15,000 farmers held a march from the Ramlila Maidan to Parliament Street near Jantar Mantar on their demands, including for loan waiver and remunerative prices for farm produce.
The farmers, who had trooped in from 21 states, said they were in financial distress due to pending loans, fall in prices of agriculture produce and drought-like situation, mostly in southern parts of the country.
Dharmlingam, a farmer from Karnataka’s Kolar district, said the huge gathering of farmers in Delhi must have helped the government to understand their sufferings.
“I wish now that the government will act,” he said.
Social activist Medha Patkar, Lok Sabha member and farmer leader Raju Shetty, and agriculture activist Kavitha Kuruganti were among those held the government responsible for the “poor” condition of Indian farmers.
They said farmers were not getting remunerative prices for their crops — even though the government had announced Minimum Support Price (MSP) — due to the Centre’s “anti-farmer” policies.
Farmer activist from Telangana, Kiran Kumar Vissa, said: “We had expected at least a visit from Union Agriculture Minister (Radha Mohan Singh) to these farmers. We are going to continue our battle for the welfare of farmers.”
The AIKSCC had organised ‘Kisan Mukti Sansad’ or mock Parliament session on Monday to present two bills on crop loans waiver and remunerative prices for farm produce.
According to AIKSCC, Modi had promised 50 per cent profit margin during the 2014 Lok Sabha election campaigning, which he had “forgot”.
It said the government had failed to address issues such as rising prices of pesticides, fertilisers, and fuel.
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