Around 30,000 farmers have blocked the main square and roads in Nashik city in Maharashtra armed with a specific set of demands for the state government. The protest has resulted in heavy traffic jams and disruption of movement of vehicles in the city.
The farmers are demanding a loan waiver, better drought relief measures along with Rs 50,000 per acre of destroyed crops. They also want land rights for tenant farmers.
The Left-affiliated All India Kisan Sabha, which backs the protest, has said they will not move unless the state government discusses their demands. Police and government officials have reached the site of the protest.
Attendance in schools are colleges are low due to the farmer strike.
Maharashtra records the most number of farmer suicide cases in the country every year and also suffers from an acute lack of rainfall especially in the Marathwada region. Farmers have time and again complained that successive state governments have shown nothing but apathy towards them.
(With inputs from Kavitha Iyer)