THANJAVUR/TIRUVARUR: The Cauvery Basin Protection Joint movement, a coalition of major farmers associations, has announced a protest on March 4 to demand inclusion of Ariyalur, Tiruchy and Karur districts in the Protected Special Agricultural zone. Another key demand would be withdrawal of cases against activists who protested against the hydrocarbon projects.
P Shanmugam, State general secretary of the association, said they welcomed the bill to set up the protected agriculture zone authority which has been a long pending demand of farmers in the Cauvery delta. He however said the authority should have more representation of farmers than ministers and officials.
To reiterate the demands demonstrations would be held on March 4 at the district head quarters of Thanjavur, Tiruvarur, Nagappattinam, Pudukkottai, Cuddalore districts and at the taluk head quarters of Ariyalur, Tiruchy and Karur districts, he added.
P R Pandian, General Secretary of Tamizhaga Cauvery Vivasayigal Sangam submitted a petition to Tiruvarur Collector T Anand demanding stoppage of the drilling work by ONGC at Chozhanganallur. He alleged that ONGC was exploring hydrocarbons in the name of exploring crude.