Jodhpur: Five persons, including two
policemen, were injured here today when farmers angry over
non-availability of seeds blocked traffic and threw stones at
the police team, which baton-charged the protestors.
Farmers who assembled in the seed market in the city this
morning went on a rampage when they were told that the
Rajasthan Marketing Cooperative Society has run out of the
stock of seeds of pearl millet.
They blocked traffic and staged a demonstration, raising
anti-government slogans, officials said adding, police reached
the area and tried to pacify them but when they refused to
budge, police resorted to lathicharge to disperse them.
Enraged farmers also threw stones at policemen.
Three farmers and two policemen were injured in the
clash, officials said. All of them have been admitted to
Later, an agreement was reached between the farmers,
private sellers and administration under which the seeds were
provided to farmers from private sellers at a controlled rate,
which was fixed at Rs 100 per kg.
Twelve shops of the wholesalers, which were closed after
the agitation of the farmers, also opened after the
intervention of the administration.
After constant crop failures in past two years, rains in
region had triggered hope among the farmers and a large number
of them went to the market to buy the seeds for sowing.
According to Deputy Director (Agriculture) Ram Gopal
Sharma, the spurt in the demand of the seeds of HHB 67 hybrid
pearl millet, suitable for desert areas, was caused by the
sudden rains the region experienced on Sunday and yesterday,
for which the government was not ready.
He said the cooperative society already had 570 kg of
seeds, which got exhausted yesterday and when the farmers went
to private shops, they found the prices there very high
compared to that of the society, which is Rs 70 per kg.
This infuriated the farmers and they went on a rampage.
"Since the seeds are not available with us but giving
relief to the farmers and ensuring availability of the seeds
to them are important, we have asked private wholesalers to
sell the seeds at the price not more than Rs 100 per kg,"
"We will get new stock by tomorrow and the farmers will
be able to purchase the seeds from us," he said.
A farmer from Rohet area of Pali, Durga Ram Bishnoi, said
"This is the appropriate time that we start sowing and if we
are not provided with the seeds now, this pre-monsoon rains
will be of no use for us."