Gandhi threw his weight behind the farmers’ protest in several states between June 1 and June 10, to observe the anniversary of Mandsaur firing
New Delhi: Congress President Rahul Gandhi will address a farmer’s rally in Mandsaur, Madhya Pradesh, on June 6 — the anniversary of the day seven farmers died in police firing last year.
Gandhi threw his weight behind the farmers’ protest in several states between June 1 and June 10, to observe the anniversary of Mandsaur firing.
In a tweet that came a day after a 10-day farmers’ protest began on Friday, he said he would address a rally in Mandsaur on June 6 to highlight the issues afflicting the country’s agriculture.
“Every day, about 35 farmers commit suicide in our country. To attract government’s attention towards the agrarian crisis, farmers are forced to protest for 10 days.
“To stand with them in the fight for the rights of our ‘Annadata’ [food provider], I will address a farmer’s rally in Mandsaur on June 6,” he said.
Farmers in the agrarian states of Punjab, Haryana, Maharashtra and Rajasthan on Friday joined the 10-day protest call given by various farmer organisations in Madhya Pradesh, who strew milk and other food items on the roads.
In a statement, Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said: “Modi government’s uncaring, unfeeling, insensitive, apathetic and thick-skinned attitude to the issues raised by 62 per cent of India’s population — farmers — has precipitated into a nationwide protest by our ‘Annadata’.”
“The protest by farmers is a direct affirmation of the ‘Kisan Virodhi’ policies of Narendra Modi,” he added.
He said: “While Mandsaur shooting is the symbol, the farmers across India are protesting against widespread rural indebtedness, non-remunerative prices and complete apathy of the Modi government.”
He also accused the Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled Madhya Pradesh government of trying to suppress the protests by using illegal means in sheer desperation.
“It [state government] is panic stricken, as it even forced the farmers to sign ‘peace bonds’ before the protest. Now the MP police has especially bought 17,000 new batons to take care of the protest,” he said in the statement.
“Farmers have announced that they will not sell their produce in Mandis in cities. They are demanding the implementation of the Swaminathan Committee Report to avail cost+50 per cent MSP as promised by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. They are also demanding a complete loan waiver,” it added.