Farmers protest against Modi’s MSP, show black flags

The All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee rallied thousands of farmers in a protest Black Flag March in New Delhi, declaring total No Confidence in Narendra Modi government’s announcement of minimum support price

The All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC) rallied thousands of peasants in a protest Black Flag March in New Delhi Friday declaring total “No Confidence” in Narendra Modi government’s announcement of minimum support price (MSP). Raising black flags, they shouted ‘Modi ka MSP Dhokha Hai’ (Modi’s MSP is a betrayal).

AIKSCC, a coordination of around 200 farmer organisations from across the country, shall oppose multinational corporations (MNCs) in agriculture by raising slogan of “Campaniyon ko Chhoot, Kisano ki Loot, Band Karo” on Quit India Day, August 9 throughout the country.

“The peasants exposed the ‘historic betrayal’ of the Prime Minister who is advertising artificially reduced figures of cost of production to justify his claim on MSP. The government had promised fifty percent profit on comprehensive cost (C2 – as mentioned in Swaminathan Commission report), but has adopted the same formula of A2 + FL by which Manmohan Singh government used for MSP of agricultural crops,” an senior AIKSSC official said.

AIKSCC has decried raising of agricultural input costs by the Modi government and said it is directly to blame for raising costs of diesel, electricity, fertilisers and for imposing a very high goods and services tax (GST) of 18 percent on farm equipments and spare parts. This is to help MNCs and harm peasants.

Two Bills for Farmers’ Freedom From Debt and Guaranteed Remunerative Minimum Support Prices, prepared by AIKSCC were scheduled to be tabled in the Lok Sabha, while one of these, the Prices Bill was presented in the Rajya Sabha by MP KK Ragesh yesterday.

While the government has restricted announcement of MSP to only 14 crops the peasantry has been demanding MSP for all crops including fruits and vegetables and milk amongst other agriculture related produce. It is also demanding that the government should supply milk in Mid-Day Meal programmes to solve the problem of oversupply and low remuneration to peasants.

The Black Flag March was led by AIKSCC Working Group members, VM Singh (Convenor), Raju Shetti (Member of Parliament), Dr. Ashish Mital, Dr. Darshan Pal, Medha Patkar, Atul Anjan, Dr.Sunilam (former MLA), Prem Singh Ghelawat, Kavitha Kuruganti, Tejinder Virk, Avik Saha, Nirbhay Singh and Yogendra Yadav amongst others.

AIKSCC is also demanding a special session of parliament to discuss and pass these two bills and it has appealed to all 21 political parties which extended support to the two bills to ensure that these are taken up and passed.

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