Thousands of farmers from across the country held a protest march in New Delhi on Monday and also began a two-day 'Kisan Mukti Sansad' or a mock Parliament session where "two Bills" were tabled.
The “Bills” were on crop loans waiver, and remunerative prices for farm produce, to highlight government apathy towards the farming community.
These Bills will be "passed" on Tuesday as the debate by farmers, activists and political leaders could not be completed on Monday.
Once these Bills are "passed", they will be sent to Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the government has "failed" to draft such Bills aiming at providing relief and support to farmers.
Yogendra Yadav, the national president of Swaraj India political party, spearheaded the march from the Ramlila Maidan to Parliament Street, reported The Hindu.
Every year the farmers of our country face a dual crisis – one, that they do not get a good produce, and when they do, they do not get fair prices for it. We are here for reminding the Narendra Modi government of their pre-poll promises made to the farmers.Yogendra Yadav to The Hindu
The protest march organised by the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC), an umbrella body of 184 farmers organisations, started from the Ramlila Maidan and ended on Parliament Street near Jantar Mantar.
The AIKSCC alleged that Modi had made a promise to farmers of 50 percent profit margin during the 2014 Lok Sabha election campaign, which he had "forgotten". It also said the government had failed to address issues such as rising prices of pesticides, fertilisers, fuel.
Owing to the huge participation of farmers across the country, Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh should hear them, the farmers said. “We want Agriculture Minister to visit the Kisan Sansad and hold discussion with farmers,” said Kirankumar Vissa, a farmer activist from Telangana.
Lok Sabha member and farmer leader Raju Shetti "tabled the Bills", which were then discussed.
We held a discussion on these Bills today but many are yet to speak. So we will continue it tomorrow. Once the Bills are passed, they will be sent to the Prime Minister.Raju Shetti
Social activist Medha Patkar was designated house Speaker during the mock session.
Criticising the NDA government for "failing" to fulfil its promises, the farmers warned it of repercussions during the 2019 Lok Sabha election.
Pooja More, a farmer from Maharashtra, said thousands of farmers had committed suicide as the government had no concern for them.
There are leaders who make tall claims, but do nothing. The current system is not beneficial to farmers.
Around 15,000-17,000 farmers from 19 states of the country participated in the protest march.
(With inputs from The Hindu, PTI, IANS)
(Breathe In, Breathe Out: Are you finding it tough to breathe polluted air? Join hands with FIT in partnership with #MyRightToBreathe to find a solution to pollution. Send in your suggestions to email@example.com or WhatsApp @ +919999008335)