Farmers lay siege to Delhi to protest sugarcane prices (Lead)November 19th, 2009 - 4:07 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Nov 19 (IANS) Shouting slogans and paralysing key roads as they marched in protest, thousands of farmers from Uttar Pradesh gathered in the capital Thursday to force the government to rethink the new pricing policy for sugarcane.
Traffic on all roads leading to Jantar Mantar, the 17th century observatory in the heart of the capital, came to a standstill as the farmers marched from Ramlila Grounds in Old Delhi.
“Traffic is progressing slowly at Kasturba Gandhi Marg, Mandi House, Jantar Mantar, New Delhi Railway Station and the Ghazipur border,” a traffic police official said.
The rally was backed by various political parties and included protesters from the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD), Bhartiya Kisan Union Tikait and Rashtriya Kisan Mazdoor Sangathan.
“The Indian government’s ordinance (on sugarcane pricing) is anti-farmer. There can be no compromise on this. The fight will go on till the ordinance is withdrawn. Sugar prices have skyrocketed but farmers are not getting their dues,” said Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader and former union rural development minister Raghuvansh Prasad.
Other political leaders also gathered at Jantar Mantar to address the farmers.
“The ordinance is tilted in favour of industrialists controlled by politicians. I will charge the agriculture minister (Sharad Pawar) and (prime minister) Manmohan Singh with looting farmers. It will only help mill owners,” Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh said.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was represented by its Maharashtra MP Gopinath Munde who said: “This (ordinance) is to support mills. Farmers will stop sowing sugarcane. Pawar is the agriculture minister so he should help farmers but he is supporting mill owners.”
Ajit Singh of the Rashtriya Lok Dal, who led the farmers’ protest in the capital, said: “Sugarcane farming in Uttar Pradesh is dependent totally on diesel and the price of diesel is touching the sky. In such a scenario if the farmers do not get an adequate price for their produce, the agitation is completely justified.”
The central government has announced Rs.129.85 per quintal for sugarcane during the 2009-10 crushing season under the Fair and Remunerative Price (FRP) system, while the Uttar Pradesh State Advisory Price (SAP) has been set between Rs.165 and Rs.170 per quintal.
In case a state government fixes SAP higher than the FRP, it will have to pay the difference.
Farmers want Rs.280 per quintal for their produce.
A farmer said: “We will fight for our rights till the end. If we don’t get the right price for our crop, we will make sure no grain comes to Delhi and block all incoming vehicles carrying milk, vegetables and grains.”
- Farmers gather in New Delhi to protest sugarcane prices - Nov 19, 2009
- U.P. sugarcane farmers protest in New Delhi - Nov 16, 2009
- Opposition corners government over sugarcane pricing, Lok Sabha adjourned (Third Lead) - Nov 19, 2009
- Farmers disrupt rail, road routes in Uttar Pradesh - Nov 12, 2009
- Uttar Pradesh cane growers damage rail tracks, block roads - Nov 09, 2009
- Uttar Pradesh cane growers stop trains, damage rail tracks (Lead) - Nov 09, 2009
- Farmers congregate in Delhi to stall winter session of Parliament - Nov 19, 2009
- Uttar Pradesh cane growers clash with police, stop trains (Second Lead) - Nov 09, 2009
- Ajit Singh threatens road blockade on sugarcane price issue - Nov 24, 2009
- BJP slams Government's new sugarcane pricing, procurement policy - Nov 19, 2009
- Lok Sabha adjourned over sugarcane price - Nov 19, 2009
- Mayawati urges centre to resolve sugarcane farmers's woes - Nov 09, 2009
- Ajit Singh threatens to lay siege to parliament over sugarcane pricing - Nov 07, 2009
- Sugar prices lead to bitter start for parliament (Second Lead) - Nov 19, 2009
- Mayawati accuses centre of ignoring sugarcane growers - Oct 31, 2009
Tags: agriculture minister, ajit singh, amar singh, bharatiya janata party, development minister, gopinath munde, indian government, industrialists, kasturba gandhi marg, kisan, manmohan singh, old delhi, police official, prime minister manmohan, prime minister manmohan singh, railway station, rld, sharad pawar, sugar prices, traffic police