UP Election 2022: BJP moves strategically to woo farmers, counter impact of protests against farm laws

By: |
August 26, 2021 4:52 PM

CM Adityanath also said that the BJP government may hike the sugarcane prices after taking all stakeholders on board over the issue.

The Uttar Pradesh government has announced a slew of farmer-friendly measures in an apparent attempt to woo voters ahead of the Assembly elections and blunt the impact of the anger against farm laws. A day after the Centre approved the highest-ever fair and remunerative price of Rs 290/quintal for sugarcane farmers, the Yogi Adityanath-led government in Uttar Pradesh today cleared the dues of cane farmers. The Centre’s move will be benefitting 5 crore sugarcane farmers and 5 lakh workers of sugar mills and related ancillary activities. Yesterday, CM Adityanath made several pro-farmer announcements that included the withdrawal of stubble burning cases lodged against farmers and a one-time settlement (OTS) scheme for interest waiver on electricity dues.

The move will benefit the farmers of Western Uttar Pradesh and, possibly, the BJP in the polls. Also, it will help the ruling party mitigate the damage caused by prolonging farmers’ agitation.

According to a PTI report, Yogi Adityanath yesterday interacted with a farmers’ delegation and assured them that all the cases of stubble burning against the farmers will be withdrawn at the earliest and even fine imposed on them would be revoked. The CM also said that the electricity connection of farmers having power dues won’t be snapped and a one-time settlement scheme will be brought in to waive interests on them.

CM Adityanath also said that the BJP government may hike the sugarcane prices after taking all stakeholders on board over the issue.

Recently, speaking in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly, CM Yogi Adityanath had informed that over Rs one lakh crore was paid to farmers towards sugarcane arrears in the last four years. According to the report, the state had so far bought 56 lakh MT wheat from farmers at MSP.

The BJP government and party leaders have been facing farmers’ flak over the three new farm laws, which were put on hold by the Supreme Court. While farmers have refused to buzz from their demand of repealing the farm laws, the Centre has maintained that it’s ready to accept amendments but won’t quash the farm laws. While farmers from Punjab have been protesting in large numbers, many peasants from western Uttar Pradesh and parts of Haryana have raised their voices against the laws.

The announcements by Yogi and the Modi governments are being seen as attempts to regain farmers’ trust ahead of the polls. Notably, earlier this month, PM Modi had released the 9th instalment of Kisan Samman Nidhi which benefitted over 36 lakh farmers from Uttar Pradesh alone.

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