Announcing that the party will observe a ‘Black Diwali’ to protest against the alleged ‘anti-people’ policies of the BJP led state government, the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) Wednesday gave an ultimatum to the government stating that if their demands are not met by November 15, then they give a call for a bandh.
Addressing a press conference today, Leader of Opposition in Haryana Vidhan Sabha and INLD leader Abhay Singh Chautala said that all sections of society in Haryana including farmers, traders, employees are facing problems under the BJP regime.
“Keeping in view the pitiable condition of the farmers, traders, employees and other sections of society, a decision was taken bythe party to observe a black diwali. We will not light up our houses or burst crackers,” he said.
Similarly, INLD president Ashok Arora said, “Under the BJP rule, the farmers are suffering. I will be in my Kurukshetra residence on Diwali with my family and hold prayers.”
Accusing the state government for ignoring the farmers and not fulfilling their poll promises, Chautala said, “Farmers are not getting the right price for paddy and bajra even as the procurement is on. Money is being deducted from the Minimum Support Price (MSP) in the name of high moisture content. The government should ensure that the farmers get the correct price.”
The INLD leader further said that when he visited the grain markets, he found that the system to measure moisture content is flawed and the farmers are being fleeced. Chautala demanded that the government should implement the Swaminathan Commission report, one of the party’s election promises, so that the farmers will get higher rates for their produce.
Chautala said that a delegation of INLD leaders met Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar in New Delhi apprising him of the situation in grain markets during procurement. However, the Chief Minister did not give a positive response or consider the issues seriously, he alleged.
“There should be an investigation into the anomalies during procurement in the mandis. The Chief Minister has not agreed to it. The farmers should be paid Rs 1,510 per quintal for paddy and Rs 1,330 per quintal for bajra which is the MSP,” the INLD leader said.
He further threatened to boycott the Swarna Jayanti celebrations in the state if the government fails to fulfil its promises. Claiming that the unemployment allowance is yet to be given to the youth and old age pension needs to be increased to Rs 2,000, Chautala said, “The BJP has surpassed Congress when it comes to corruption. The government is functioning on RSS agenda. The Punjab government is coming out with advertisements about toll free numbers for farmers to report any anomalies in procurement. While the CM of the neighbouring state is concerned about farmers, the Haryana CM is not willing to initiate action against those indulging in anomalies.”