A sugarcane grower, Vittal Bhimappa Arabhavi (60), who was participating in a protest outside the Suvarna Vidhana Soudha here demanding remunerative price and payment of dues, committed suicide by consuming pesticide on Wednesday.

The death triggered protests by farmers in some parts of the State. The farmers charged that it was a “murder by the government and not suicide.”

The incident sparked off a furore in the Legislative Assembly, leading to its adjournment. Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha and Hasiru Sene president Kodihalli Chandrashekar has called for a Statewide agitation from Thursday. The dharna outside the Suvarna Vidhana Soudha will continue. Farmers’ organisations plan to organise ‘rasta roko’ and picket offices of deputy commissioners across the State.

Within hours of the suicide, the government announced an incentive of Rs. 150 for a tonne of sugarcane in addition to the State Advisory Price of Rs. 2,500 a tonne.

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