Water cannons used to disperse protesting farmers in Chandigarh

Chandigarh, Feb. 18 (ANI): Police used water cannons here on Thursday to disperse protesting farmers who were demanding implementation of a National Commission on Farmers (NCF) report.

A large number of small farmers in several states are under debt following patchy rainfall. The distressed farmers shouted slogans against the government for not bailing them out.

Police had set up barricades across the road to prevent the protesters from marching to government offices. The police had to use water cannons to disperse the agitators when they tried to breach the barricades forcibly.

“We were going to submit the memorandum to the chiefs of Haryana and Punjab states and to the governors of these states for the Prime Minister seeking implementation of the suggestions made in the Swaminathan report for farmers. We also wanted that the debts of the famers should be waived off. But then, the police beat us and made us run away,” said one of the protestors.

The government had set up the National Commission on Farmers (NCF) in November 2004 under the chairmanship of Professor M.S. Swaminathan.

The commission submitted five reports between December 2004 and October 2006.

The final report of the commission focused on causes of farmer distresses and the rise in farmer suicides, and recommended a slew of measures to address them. (ANI)

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