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Maharashtra farmers planning strike from June 1

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Farmers from Maharashtra are planning a ‘strike’ from June 1 in a bid to draw the state government’s attention to their problems. The strike would involve not selling agri produce in market and not engaging in any fresh crop growing activities. This decision was taken at a meeting of farmers at Puntamba village in Rahata tehsil of Ahmednagar district. Dhananjay Dhorde, a farmer from Puntamba shared these details with News agency.

Farmer groups from Aurangabad, Nashik and Ahmednagar districts held the meeting to seek support from their counterparts in other parts of the state. Around 2,000 farmers from 40 villages attended this meeting. They had prepared a charter of demands about problems faced by farmers. They have sought pension for farmers and a 100 per cent subsidy for drip irrigation. The demands were submitted to the local tehsildar.

The farmer said that if the government doesn’t act on their demands by May 31, no agri produce will be brought to market and they will also desist from activities including sowing new crop. The farmers’ demands include loan waiver, free electricity, appropriate price for their produce, grant for irrigation and higher price for milk. The agitation will not involve any political party or leaders.

As per figures released by the National Crime Records Bureau, farmer suicides in the country rose by 42 per cent between 2014 and 2015. Farmers in Maharashtra have faced two consecutive droughts and the recent unseasonal showers have damaged yield in parts of Marathwada.

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