FARMERS from Haryana and other states, who have been agitating on host of issues, will reach Delhi on July 3 to gherao the Niti Aayog office in the national capital and start an indefinite dharna at Jantar Mantar. Several farmers’ outfits, which met in Delhi on Monday, have also announced that they would launch a jail bharo agitation from August 9, on which date the Quit India Movement began in 1942.
“Niti Aayog is responsible for formulating policies but it’s not formulating farmer-friendly policies. That’s why we have decided to gherao its office,” Gurnam Singh Chaduni, president of Bharatiya Kisan Union, Haryana, said after the meeting.
Calling for implementation of the Swaminathan Commission recommendations, Chaduni said “discontent and unrest” were simmering because the government had ignored the farmers’ voices for long. Meanwhile, agitating farmers in Haryana have started rehearsals of yoga postures, including Shavasana (corpse posture) that they will perform on June 21 when the government observes the International Yoga Day. The farmers have chosen the unique way to express their protest against the government’s “anti-farmer” policies and to highlight agrarian distress.
Haryana Finance Minister Captain Abhimanyu has reiterated that the government had been taking steps consistent with the report of the Swaminathan Commission. “Apart from this, the compensation being offered to the farmers in case of crop damage is the highest ever in the state. While the previous government disbursed compensation amounting to an average of Rs 90 crore a year to the farmers, the present state government has disbursed compensation to the tune of an average of Rs 1,100 crore a year,” he added.