Farmers call off protest, return from Mumbai as Maharashtra government accepts demands

The Central Railway had earlier announced that it would run two special trains from Mumbai's CSMT to Bhusawal to send the farmers back.

Farmers call off protest, return from Mumbai as Maharashtra government accepts demands
Pic courtesy: ANI

MUMBAI: Over 35,000 farmers from across Maharashtra, who had embarked on a Long Protest March, on Monday returned to their native villages after Maharashtra government accepted their demands.

The Central Railway had earlier announced that it would run two special trains from Mumbai's Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) to Bhusawal to send the agitating farmers back. The train timings were 8:50 pm and 10:00 pm.

The protest march that started from Nashik on March 6 was to press for a complete loan waiver. Led by the All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS), the farmers had reached Mumbai late on Sunday.

Earlier today, the agitating farmers had met representatives of the Maharashtra government in Mumbai with a list of their demands. The meeting to address the agrarian distress had followed a march by All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) – peasants front of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) – from Nashik to Mumbai.

Following the meeting, the Maharashtra government said that it was a positive one where all demands of the farmers were discussed. Some of the demands of the farmers were accepted and the government also promised a written draft of the acceptance.

Complete loan waiver and profit of 1.5 times input cost for all major agriculture commodities were the major demands of the AIKS. The farmers had also demanded an immediate implementation of MS Swaminathan committee's recommendations, which ensures fair remuneration.

The agitating farmers were also demanding compensation of Rs 40,000 per acre for the destruction of crops due to hailstorm and pink-worm, allocation of forest land under cultivation to farmers and implementation of Forest Rights Act.

The government said that a six-member panel would be set up to look into all the demands and will submit its report in a given timeframe.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had said that the government is "positive in fulfilling their demands". He told the Maharashtra Assembly that minister Girish Mahajan had been in touch with the farmers since the first day of the protest.

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