Updated: September 8, 2021 2:23:03 pm
Days after farmers held a Mahapanchayat in Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar over farm laws and gave a call to defeat the BJP, RSS-affiliate Bharatiya Kisan Sangh (BKS) Tuesday said it was going to launch a country-wide protest for a law to ensure minimum support price for all farmers. It also urged the government to take a “sympathetic view” of the demands of farmers.
In a press conference, BKS said it would launch its protest on Wednesday. It had earlier raised the issue in a memorandum presented to the government.
“Minimum Support Price is an illusion. Farmers are not getting MSP in all parts of the country. A new stringent law should be brought which ensures that farmers’ get remunerative price of their produce,” BKS general secretary Badrinarayan Choudhary said.
Only farmers of one or two states could avail the benefits of MSP mechanism, while the farmers in rest of the country remained deprived of its benefits, Choudhary said while adding that it is high time when efforts should be made to reduce the input cost of agriculture.
The development is significant since ahead of the UP polls, the government is under pressure to mollycoddle farmers.
Choudhary said BKS has sent a memorandum to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on August 11 stating that a major cause of anger and discontent among farmers across the country is that they are not getting remunerative price for their produce.
When asked about the protesting farmers’ demand, Choudhary said, “Government should take sympathetic view of their demands, though it is also the case that some of the farmers’ demands are not reasonable.”
BKS office bearers said units across the country in all districts will hold a symbolic protest to press for its demand for a strict law for remunerative price for agri-produce and will also submit a memorandum to the district collectors.
In September last year, ahead of two key Bills related to farmers’ produce and price assurance being taken up by Rajya Sabha for passage, BKS had said the Bills in their current form were not acceptable.
The main thrust of the BKS suggestions then was that all traders must buy farmers produce at not less than the Minimum Support Price (MSP). BKS had even asked for the Bills to be sent to Standing Committee for adequate discussion. It had asked the government to either incorporate assured MSP in the Bills or bring another law. However, both the Bills were passed without incorporation of its suggestions.
In its letters addressed to Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, the BKS had then said it doubted whether the ordinance brought by the government would fulfil the objective of providing farmers the right price for their produce.
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