The Maharashtra government representatives met a group of more than thirty-thousand farmers who presented their list of demands from the government. After a meeting regarding the agricultural distress, All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) led a march with the peasants from the Communist Party of India. The march started from Nashik and concluded in Mumbai.
The list of demands by the protesting farmers includes an unconditional and full waiver of loans. The farmer’s organization All India Kisan Sabha alleged that because of government negligence, there have been more than 1700 farmers committed suicide since June last year. They have also demanded an MSP of at least 1.5 times greater than the input cost. Farmers also wanted a complete waiver of electricity bills and compensation of crop loss due to hailstorm and attack of pink bollworm. The Swaminathan commission had recommended certain measures which were in the farmer’s interest and AIKS wanted its immediate implementation.
The Government of Maharastra had announced that they have arranged a meeting in which discussion of various measures of policies took place. The government finally accepted some of the demands and have promised a written draft of acceptance soon.
Maharashtra Government minister Girish Mahajan while speaking to the media persons said that they had a very good and positive meeting with the farmers and they have discussed various measures and policies. He said that his government accepted some of the 12 demands and they will provide a written draft of the acceptance very soon.
The AIKS led protesters have demanded a complete waiver of loans and electricity bills and a 1.5-time MSP in lieu of the primary input cost. Another demand consisted of an immediate implementation of various recommendations from the M.S Swaminathan committee. The government said that the farmers are satisfied with the decisions of the government.
The demand list from the protesting farmers also included a compensation of forty thousand rupees per acre for the destruction of crops by pink-worm, hailstorm, and implementation of the Forest Right Act. The list also included the demand for allocation of forest land to farmers for cultivation. The Government has promised setting up a committee of six members who will give a recommendation after examining the reality within a given timeframe.
Quoting that the government is positive in fulfilling the demands of the peasants, Maharashtra Chief Minister addressed the media persons. He claimed that the minister Girish Mahajan has been in touch with the farmers since the first day. Congress along with other opposition parties claimed that the Bhartiya Janta Party is responsible for the situation. Congress President Rahul Gandhi wrote ina tweeted that the march of farmers clearly shows the failure of the Modi Government and that the people have become more supportive of Congress. He said that his party is always in support of the farmers and tribals and their families and they fully support the cause.