Record 1065 vidarbha farmers suicides reported in first year of Maharashtra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan: Hostile administration is Killing Innocent Farmers
Nagpur -11th November , 2011
When chief minister Prithviraj Chavan is celebrating his first year of holding office more 1065 vidarbha farm widows and her family members are struggling to get food for survival, mass genocide of cotton farmers triggered during last year due to wrong policies of Govt. which imposed restriction cotton export on cotton farmers then allowing seed, fertilizer and pesticide companies to increase their price without giving any consideration to minimum support price to Maharashtra main cash crop cotton forcing debt ridden cotton farmers to commit suicide since e assume office at rate of three farmers a day this is record number of farm suicides for CM who is so called most efficient and worked on PM vidarbha farmers relief package as MOS in PMO but farmers despair and distress trigger due it’s indecision attitude to handle crisis ,Kishor Tiwari of Vidarbha Janandolan Samiti informed in press note today.
‘‘Massive corruption from top to bottom and very hostile and failure of administration is killing innocent cotton farmers ,we have been demanding central Govt.intervention but noby is listing us our plea” tiwari urged. ASS
Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti has urged UPA convener Smt. Sonia Gandhiji to chage Maharashtra worst performing Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan as he is failed to protect cotton farmers of region having has ignored main demands of hike in Minimum Support Price-MSP of cotton, soybean and paddy and failed to resolve the issues of the procurement centers along with serious issue of power cut in rural vidarbha which is more than 18 hours and due to load-shedding, 50% cotton and paddy production of the region has suffered hence it was expected ,president Kishor Tiwari informed today.
“The recent announcement of Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan yesterday that hiking the of Minimum Support Price-MSP of cotton will hit textile industry and lead to closing of mills has shocked the five million cotton farmers of Maharashtra as this is against the pending demand of congress and NCP party and It was expected that congress leaders of region will take up this serious issue of agrarian crisis with Maharashtra CM but nobody pushed the main demands and all were busy in welcoming him moreover. As Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan has given hostile administration to state and administrative corruption is at peaks there is no coordination of ministers with chief minister resulting complete failure of state coalition Govt. hence we are demanding his removal to save dying cotton farmers of Maharashtra” Tiwari said.
Bt cotton seeds promoted by the state have increased the economic pressure on farmers instead of resulting in higher yields of disease free crops. Already a low return and high risk livelihood, these policies that claim to reduce the risk have only increased the cost of farming. As a result, the cotton economy of the region has collapsed, resulting in mass suicide since 2001, he pointed out that when the rate of cotton lint gets a rate of $5.346 per kg in USA (around Rs 8,906 per quintal), the farmers of Vidarbha was getting a meager rate of Rs 4,000 per quintal.
VJAS that has been documenting the farmers' suicide in the region, said that most of the cotton farmers were distressed because of meagre rate of raw cotton in the market this season.
"There is a need for state government's intervention in this regard. The government should provide at least Rs 6,000 per quintal. The chief minister Prithviraj Chavan had promised that he would talk with the union government for better support price for the raw cotton.However, nothing has been done in this regard,"Tiwari alleged.
Looking at prevailing situation internationally wheren cotton prices are likely to soar to Rs 7,000 a quintal this year too riding on the global scarcity on account of poor crops in the US, China and Pakistan, Indian cotton farmers can hedge these prices only if central Govt. manages to raise the minimum support price to Rs 6,000 level but The government has not responded favorably disappointing cotton farmer hence we urge for urgent intervention to save dying cotton farmers, Tiwari said.
"As the reports from allover the are showing world shortage of cotton production , the Indian farmer gets advantage this time as cotton is now placed under open general license (OGL) for exports. But the OGL status should be continued. Last year, the Centre put unnecessary restrictions on exports denying farmers an opportunity to make it big. In the process they lost a market worth Rs 30,000 crore," said Tiwari. Tiwari continued, "The government did not concede our demand of providing food security to desperate, distressed and marginal farmers even. The government needs to behave sensibly and responsibly to address farmers' woes and prevent the prevailing spate of suicide in the killing fields of Vidarbha." If the cotton growers do not get better price this season, the situation will assume drastic proportions, he cautioned.
VJAS has urged Govt. of India to send team of expert to assess the Bt. Cotton crop damage in maharashtra and west vidarbha in particular where cotton farmers are killing themselves .VJAS has been demanding hike in cotton MSP Rs.6000/- per quintal and relief package to dying cotton farmers of region, Tiwari added.
“At the national level Maharashtra is main state which is cultivating Bt.cotton in around 52 lakh hector which is around 40% of Indian cotton cultivation moreover agrarian economy of Maharashtra is completely based on cotton production and prices hence we demand urgent intervention from Govt.” Tiwari added.