Farmers protest against Chhattisgarh govt over paddy procurement

 Farmers under the banner of Chhattisgarh Sanyukt Kisan Morcha (CSKM) today staged a dharna at several places across the state protesting against the Chhattisgarh government's new adjustments in paddy procurement policy.

PTI| Updated: Oct 18, 2014, 23:44 PM IST

Raipur: Farmers under the banner of Chhattisgarh Sanyukt Kisan Morcha (CSKM) today staged a dharna at several places across the state protesting against the Chhattisgarh government's new adjustments in paddy procurement policy.

The state government had recently decided to limit the procurement of paddy to 10 quintal per acre and asked the cooperative societies to start the process from December 1.

The decision drew sharp criticism from main opposition Congress as well as several farmers' associations, which claimed it will cause huge losses to the farmers as the paddy production in the state varies between 15 to 20 quintals per acre.

Around 85 per cent population of the state depends on farming for earning their livelihood.

"The state government's new directives regarding paddy procurement will only worsen financial condition of the farmers," spokesperson CSKM Jageshwar Prasad said.

Former Chief Minister and senior Congress leader Ajit Jogi extended his support to the protest and participated in the dharna along with his supporters at Arang and few other places in Raipur district.

However, other Congress leaders and their supporters did not join the agitation. About 25 different farmers' associations participated in the dharna?all over the state.

"All this is happening due to the ruling government's inability to perform its job to complete the custom milling process," Prasad said urging the BJP-led government to revoke its decision and purchase every single grain of paddy from the farmers.

Besides, the farmers also demanded that the ruling BJP should fulfill its assembly poll manifesto promise to procure paddy from farmers at Rs 2100 MSP per quintal.

The protest was held in a peaceful manner at several locations and no untoward incident was reported from any region, a senior police official said.