The BJP today alleged there was a “conspiracy” behind the ongoing agitation of farmers in Madhya Pradesh, and asked Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi to refrain from “politicising the death of farmers” in the state. Allegations by BJP leaders, including Venkaiah Naidu and Narender Singh Tomar, came amidst the Central and state governments’ efforts to contain the protest by farmers at Mandsaur in Madhya Pradesh. At least five persons have been killed in the violence during the protest. The farmers have been protesting since June 1 demanding higher minimum support prices (MSP) for their produce and loan waiver among other things. “Farmers of Madhya Pradesh are peace-loving. They do not indulge in violent activities. There is a conspiracy behind this entire incident. “Those who do not want peace and prosperity in the state and can not see the BJP government functioning smoothly are behind this incident,” Rural Development Minister Narender Singh Tomar said. Tomar, who represents Gwalior seat in Lok Sabha, said farmers in Madhya Pradesh are the most prosperous in the country. Replying to a question on Rahul Gandhi’s scheduled visit to the protest site tomorrow, the minister said he should not “politicise” the death of farmers. He also said that Gandhi and his party, which were in power for so long, were responsible for the poor condition of farmers in the country. Naidu also hit out at the Congress for “hijacking” the protest in Mandsaur.
“It is a very sad turn of events in a state that is the most peaceful in India. Congress is trying to politicise farmers’ problems after they failed to counter Shivraj Singh Chouhan politically in the state,” he said earlier. Later in a press conference, BJP General Secretary Bhupender Yadav said the BJP government in the state was taking appropriate measures to tackle the issue. Asked about the demand by farmers of various states for a loan waiver as was done by the BJP-ruled Uttar Pradesh government, Union minister Piyush Goyal said the situation varies from state to state and that it was up to the respective state governments to take decision.