Monday, January 26, 2009

Massive protest of vidarbha cotton farmers on republic day against Maharashtra Govt.’s cotton procurement policy

Massive protest of vidarbha cotton farmers on republic day against Maharashtra Govt.’s cotton procurement policy

Nagpur:26th Jan.2009

When nationa was celebrating it’s 59th republic day thousands of vidarbha farmers were protesting against the Maharashtra Govt.’s policy decision to procure the cotton below minimum support price (MSP) that’s Bt.cotton is being procured at the average price Rs.2650 per quintal as against the MSP is Rs.3000/- per quintal. The cotton farmer of vidarbha region known for maximum numbers farm suicides in India are agitating to get legitimate rates to their cotton crop but the state owned agency marketing federation has been using police force to run procurement centers to curb farmers unrest against this unjust earlier all most all cotton procurement centers in the state were closed leaving the farmers saddled with harvested crop waiting to sell the produce and it has resulted in to distress sale of cotton at the much cheaper rates to private traders than MSP and it has made purpose of giving higher MSP of Rs.3000/- per quintal as ridiculous as it failed to benefit vidarbha dying cotton farmer according to the Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti (VJAS).

Hundrers of Cotton farmers in cotton belt of vidarbha gathered in front of sub divisional office of kelapur in yavatmal to lodge the protest on Indian Republic Day 26th Betrayal Day and were demonstrating against the policies of Govt. and push the demand to restore the MSP of raw cotton at the rate of Rs.3000 per quintal at all cotton procurement centers

‘there is no buyer to cotton other than Govt. agency and state is not only giving much less rate than MSP but farmers dues are unpaid since 15th of December as National Agricultural Marketing Federation (Nafed), has exhausted its funds earmarked for purchases this year."Farmers are in dire straits as private traders are also not coming forward to purchase because of severe recession in international market leading to big fall in cotton the start of the season, federation had promised to procure every single boll of cotton offered for purchase. It had also fixed 200 lakh quintals as target for collection. But after collecting less than 80 lakh quintal it has given up. Because Nafed, on whose behalf it is purchasing this year, is cash strapped and reports have appeared in media stating that Nafed has exhausted its allocated funds," VJAS president Kishore Tiwari informed the gathering today.

said Tiwari.

"Obviously, the federation has failed to keep its word and is misleading people saying that due poor quality of cotton they are giving less price than MSP" Tiwari alleged.

In order to draw the Govt.'s attention to the serious problem of Vidarbha's distressed farmers in cotton belt and seek more funds for Nafed so that procurement is done at MSP to good quality cotton as per guidelines of CACP and federation to pay all dues of farmers ,we are observing protest day informed Mohan Mammidwar loacal activist..

"The farmer who soled cotton 50 days ago to the federation is receiving payment now. This is again a failure on the federation part which had promised to clear dues within a week," mammidwar said.

Cotton farmers urged Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan who has promised to respond to cotton growers crisis to attend the problems of west vidarbha cotton farmers who are till committing suicides daily and apathy of administration is adding fuel on going distress among the dying farmer, Tiwari informed.


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