Staff Reporter

NELLORE: The All-India Agriculture Workers’ Association (AIAWA) is planning to launch a nation-wide agitation to press the government on the problems of agriculture workers in the country, said the AIAWA general secretary and Rajya Sabha member A.Vijaya Raghavan. Addressing a meeting of the 75th AIAWA convention which also coincides with the AP Vyavasaya Karmika Sangam 25th conferences here on Thursday, Mr. Raghavan said there was acute shortage of foodgrains, pulses, sugar and other essential commodities in the country and the hike in prices had severely affected the lives of the agriculture workers.

Alleging that the government was making much propaganda on National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) and the implementation of the scheme is very poor, the MP asked the government to lift restrictions in the scheme, extend it to all areas and provide work to all villagers. Stating that the Centre was more interested on the welfare of corporate companies than the labourers in agrarian sector and the workers in unorganised sectors whose population was some crores, he said the UPA government had failed to provide social security, education, health, housing, employment, proper wages, land and control the prices.

The union would launch a country-wide agitation from February 2010 in all States to protect the rights of the agriculture workers, Mr. Raghavan said.

Tripura Deputy Speaker Bhanulal Sahu said the Communist Party of India (Marxist) was in the forefront in implementing land reforms and provide food, education, health and other facilities to the poor in Tripura and West Bengal states.

Of the total 10 lakh plus hectares of cultivable land available in Tripura state, government has provided assured irrigation water for 80 percent of the land and the remaining land is being utilized for construction and industrial purposes. The literacy in the state is 84 percent and by August 15 2010, the Tripura government has set a target to achieve 100 percent literacy, said Mr.Sahu.