The leaders urged the government to fix a guaranteed minimum income for farmers and called for setting up a Farmers’ Income Commission
New Delhi | 08 Nov 2017
Unhappy with Modi government for not fulfilling the promises for farmers, Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Rakesh Tikait on Tuesday called for campaign against the Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) in every poll bound state and announced a Farmers Mahapanchayat at Parliament Street in New Delhi on 13th March 2018.
“BKU will go in every election bound state and campaign against the BJP as Modi government has been ignoring the plight of farmers. They will run a campaign till March 2018 and organize a Kisan Mahapanchayat in March next year”, Tikait said.
Highlighting the plight of farmers, from suicides to meagre income, BKU leader accused the Centre for farmer’s denigration and demanded a joint session of the Parliament besides proposing to set up an Agriculture cabinet to redress the farmer’s grievances.
Addressing media, he demanded loan waiver and initiation by the government to take steps to curb the suicides committed by the farmers.
“There should be a total debt waiver on all kinds of loans of farmers so as to reduce the agrarian distress”, said Tikait.
On the issue of Minimum Support (MSP), BKU General Secretary Yudhvir Singh said, “Government promised MSP as C2 + 50 percent but government in a reply to Supreme Court informed of not implementing it”.
Not happy with the procurement at current MSP mechanism, BKU General Secretary Yudhvir Singh said, “MSP of all crops should be declared and procurement of all crops should be guaranteed at the MSP in the country”.
“Even today the produce is getting sold below the support price. Extensive measures should be taken to stop this”, he added.
He also said, “If Prime Minister Modi can assure of guaranteed procurement of agri produce at MSP to Mozambique farmers, why the same is not being assured to Indian farmer”.
To renew the credit card loan every year, farmers are forced to take loans from private money lenders because of his miserable financial condition. Keeping in mind this present agrarian crisis, Yudhvir Singh said, “Farmers should be given long term loans. Farmers should be given credit cards and loans for crops and machinery should be on zero interest for five years”.
BKU also demanded a proper Policy for welfare of families of the farmers who committed suicide. The leaders said, “Government should announce a special grant to help such families and a nationwide policy should be formed for financial assistance of the families of the farmers who commit suicide”.
They also urged the government to fix a guaranteed minimum income for farmers and called for setting up a Farmers’ Income Commission.
“Government should ensure that a farmer’s family’s income is not less than the income of fourth grade employees”, said Yudhvir Singh.
The leaders were also critical of crop insurance scheme, demanded ban on GM crops and immediate payment of arrears of sugar cane farmers.
BKU Punjab President Ajmer Singh Lakhowal and BKU’s women farmer leader Poonam Singh were also present on the occasion.