Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Mar 18:
While Odisha Finance Minster Pradeep Amat did not even make any passing reference on farmer suicides in the state during his presentation of annual budget in the Assembly today, the members of Navnirman Krushak Sangathan (NKS) launched a 12-day hunger strike from today pressing for fulfilment of their demands.
The organisation working to protect the interests of farmers in the state has been demanding pension for the farmers and to recognise the farmer suicide cases.
The farmers’ body threatened to organise a massive rally in the capital city on March 29 if the government fails to accede to their demands before the conclusion of the budget session.
“Nearly 200 farmers have committed suicide due to drought-like situation in the state. However, the government has attributed the reason to love-related issues, employment problems and other reasons. Now, its time to fight for pride, prestige and pension,” a member of Navnirman Krushak Sangathan said.
The editor of leading Odia daily ‘Sambad’ and advisor of Navnirman Krushak Sangathan Soumya Ranjan Patnaik addressed the huge congregation at Lower PMG here today.
Notably, NKS had been demanding implementation of a provision for Rs 2, 000 pension to every farmer’s family in order to ensure social security, besides Rs 500 as additional bonus per quintal of paddy.