Zee Media Bureau
Mumbai: BJP chief Rajnath Singh will hold a five-km-long ‘padyatra’ (foot march) organised by the party`s state unit to highlight the plight of farmers, specially those producing sugarcane, cotton and soyabean, in Maharashtra.
Ahead of the padyatra, senior BJP leader Gopinath Munde said, "BJP chief would participate in the last leg of the 375-km rally, which began from Lodga in Latur district and would culminate at Aurangabad on October 7."
Farmers’ leader and former BJP legislator Pasha Patel, who is leading the rally, said party leaders Rajiv Pratap Rudy, Devendra Fadnanvis, Vinod Tawde and ex-Gujarat minister Purushottam Rupala were among those who have so far walked along with the rally since it started from Latur earlier this month.
The rally has been organised to draw the government’s attention towards the sharp fall in prices of sugarcane cotton and soyabean, said Patel, national vice president of BJP Kisan Morcha.
Government should impose 90 percent import duty on edible oil, he said, adding that the restriction on cotton export should be lifted.
Munde, the deputy leader of BJP in Lok Sabha, blamed the UPA government for farmers not getting remunerative prices for their produce.
Munde demanded that the Centre should provide Rs 10,000 crore loan to sugar industry at zero per cent interest like the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led NDA govt, which provided Rs 6,500 crore at zero per cent interest.
Blaming NCP chief Sharad Pawar for the bad state of sugar industry in the state, Munde said had he taken certain steps to inculcate “discipline” in the industry, the present situation wouldn’t have arisen.
Munde participated in the farmers rally from Kolewadi village in Beed district. He also interacted with villagers, some of whom said there would be a spurt in farmers’ suicides if the state and central governments continued with their “regressive” policies for farmers.
With PTI inputs