MUMBAI: Demanding better price for their produce and crop loan waiver, farmers on Tuesday stormed Maharashtra secretariat and threw onions and tur dal at the entrance of the building.
“Our main demand is a complete waiver of crop loans. Along with that, we also want to highlight the plight of farmers who sowed onion and tur this year. The crops need to get assured price,” Sanjay Patil-Patnekar, president of Baliraja Shetkari Sanghatana told the New Indian Express, as the police whisked the protestors away from the secretariat gate.
Maharashtra has been the largest producer of tur dal in the last one year.
Government statistics show that out of the 11 lakh tonnes of the pulse purchased in the country, around four lakh tonnes was produced in Maharashtra. However, lakhs of tonnes of tur dal still remains unsold with the farmers.
With the monsoons approaching, the farmers are worried about the storage of their crop.
The other demands of the organisation were initiating CID inquiry into alleged corruption in the procurement of tur and relief for farmers affected by unseasonal rain and hailstorm.
Shiv Sena, in its mouthpiece Saamana, raised questions on the alleged scam on Tuesday and asked why the Maharashtra government had bought tur dal from dealers and not from farmers directly.