JAJPUR: Protesting distress sale of their produce, hundreds of farmers from across the district under the banner of Navnirman Krushak Sangathan (NKS) dumped vegetables, pulses and groundnut on National Highway 16 at Chandikhole Chowk here on Wednesday.The protest was organised by the district committee of NKS.
Huge dumps of vegetables, black and green grams and groundnuts were seen along the road at Chandikhole within Barchana police limits. The farmers took to this unique protest due to steep fall in wholesale prices of their produce, the agitators alleged.“We are not getting the right price for our produce and forced to sell it at a throwaway price. Our earnings are not sufficient enough to repay the crop loans because of the distress sale,’’ said Kalandi Nayak, a farmer.
The NKS accused the district administration of being apathetic towards the farmer community.
District coordinator of NKS Nimai Charan Ray said, “We had met Jajpur Collector a month back and apprised him of our plight arising out of the distress sale of groundnut, pulses, coriander, milk and vegetables. We had also submitted a memorandum to the Collector in this regard. However, it yielded no result.”
Hence, the farmers were forced to hit the streets, he said and added that the agitators have put forth their demand in a peaceful manner.Due to the protests, vehicular traffic along NH-16 was paralysed for about an hour. The agitators blocked the road with dumps of vegetables and also staged a sit-in.
Besides the agitating farmers, NKS State convenor Akshaya Kumar, advisor Soumya Ranjan Patnaik, journalist Rabi Das and other functionaries were present.