More than 110 farmer outfits across the country have planned a nationwide strike from June 1 to 10 to press for their demands. The farmers are demanding higher rates for their produce, complete loan waiver, payouts to small farmers to match their income with that of a class IV government employees, and lifting the ban on cow slaughter. The strike has been planned under the banner of Rashtriya Kisan Mahasangh, an umbrella organisation of the 110 farmer outfits. In line with what happened in Maharashtra last year, farmers will be told to stop selling their produce including milk and vegetables during this period.
In fact, a farmer delegation on Monday met the President in the capital and petitioned for a special session of Parliament to discuss the agrarian crisis in the country. Also, Maharashtra dairy farmers—who had staged a week-long protest against the low prices of dairy products in the state by distributing milk free of cost — have decided to strengthen their protest.
During a gram sabha meeting at Lakhanga village in Aurangabad in Maharashtra, the farmers have collectively decided to gherao the ministry of animal husbandry and dairy development in Mumbai on June 1. Yogesh Pande, spokesperson, Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana, said that due to the lack of adequate price for their produce, they are not able to recover the basic cost of cultivation and, hence, every year they are pushed deeper into the debt trap. Such conditions have led to several cases of farmer suicides.