Lakhs of farmers, agricultural workers, share croppers, fishermen, sand mine workers, and uprooted farmers are planning to reach Delhi on November 29, 2018 to demand complete freedom from debt and guaranteed remunerative minimum support prices (MSP) for agriculture commodities under the leadership of All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC), a front of 208 peasant organisations. They will march from Ramlila Maidan to Boat Club on November 30 to press upon parliamentary parties to pass both the bills, “Complete Freedom from Debt” and “Guaranteed Remunerative MSP for Agri Commodities”.
AIKSCC has also demanded lowering of input prices of diesel, seeds, fertilisers, electricity, insecticides, high cost of which has made food costly, farming impossible and farmers indebted. The government has been raising fertiliser prices by almost 25 percent every year and has increased taxes on diesel by 313 percent in last four years..
“While the Narendra Modi government had promised to waive farm loans and implement Swaminathan Commission recommendations of 1.5 times the cost of production in 2014, later it refused to do so. During protesting for these demands, six farmers in Mandsaur, Madhya Pradesh were shot dead by the police,” Dr. Ashish Mital, Working Group Member, AIKSCC said.
“Though Modi Govt has given easy loans to several industrial houses and multinational corporations (MNCs) which are not paid back. NPAs which were 4.62 percent of total Bank loans in 2014-15 have risen to 14.2 percent by October 2018. The government waived Rs 3.16 lakh crore of these NPAs recently. Bank coffers are empty and the government is chasing the RBI to bail them out. Neither the RSS, nor the BJP govt has spared a thought to help farmers, Mittal added.
At the same time, tens of thousands of peasants led by All India Kisan Mazdoor Sabha (AIKMS) shall participate in this protest from Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Bihar.