BENGALURU: A meeting convened by Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy to address farmers’ issues here on Thursday ended on a bitter note as the disappointed farmers trooped out expressing their anguish. ‘
“The Chief Minister pours out his own woes instead of mitigating ours,” said Karnataka State Sugarcane Farmers Association president Kuruburu Shantakumar while announcing a farmers’ agitation from December 9 ahead of the start of winter session of the legislature to press for their demands.
Farmers who participated in the meeting presented a slew of demands with implementation of crop loan waiver and clearance of sugarcane dues by sugar factories topping the list.They were in no mood to accept Kumaraswmay’s request for patience in delivering on his promise of farm loan waiver. “We wanted the CM to issue a circular to banks not to take penal action against farmers in debt as the state government is ready repay it. But the CM started the same old story explaining the procedural impediments in executing the loan waiver. He again asked us to be patient and sought a little more time. We are disappointed again,” Shantakumar said.
The Chief Minister assured that the much-hyped crop loan waiver will be implemented in phases with loans of up to Rs 50,000 being waived in the first phase, Shantakumar said.
The demand for action against sugar factories has also not been considered so far. The farmers had expected action before December 10. As the meeting failed to offer relief for farmers, Shantakumar announced an agitation in Belagavi by sugarcane farmers on December 9 and state-wide agitation of farmers from December 10.
Kumaraswamy has invited the farmers for one more round of talks in Belagavi. However, Shantakumar said the farmers were in no mood to attend it.