Bhopal, June 4 (IANS) The ongoing protest by farmers in Madhya Pradesh entered its fourth day on Monday as many areas are now facing shortages of vegetables and milk, while in some, vegetables were being sold under tight security.
Meanwhile, senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader Sartaj Singh, who was a minister in Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s first government, condemned his own party and government on Monday, saying farmers are tense and increasingly committing suicide.
To mark the first anniversary of the killing of six protesting farmers in police firing in the state’s Mandsaur and death of another from beating by police, the farmers have organised the “Gaon Bandh Andolan” in which they have stopped supplies to cities and are not buying any products from there.
Aam Kisan Union President Kedar Sirohi told IANS: “Farmers are getting people’s support for the protest. Farmers in large numbers are not leaving their villages. The government is trying to pressurize the farmers to supply milk and vegetable to the cities but the farmers are adamantly asking for the fulfilment of their demands.”
The administration is taking strict action in Mandsaur and adjoining villages with travellers under special surveillance and security forces deployed to keep the situation in check.
Addressing a press conference, Sartaj Singh said the farmers are not committing suicide at the Congress’ behest, and called on his party, which has always worked in the favour of the farmers and set up the Swaminathan Commission, which had recommended that farmers get one and half times of their cost for their produce.
Farmers will benefit greatly from the implementation of the recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission but they are protesting because they are not getting it, he said.