Staff Correspondent

TUMKUR: Farmers of Tumkur district staged a demonstration at the Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) in Sira in Tumkur district on Tuesday after the price of tur dal (togari) crashed to Rs. 3,700 a quintal from Rs. 4,650 a quintal.

Farmers brought the produce as usual at noon and the traders, who gathered at the market, decided to buy the tur from farmers at the above price. This triggered the protest.

The farmers refused to sell the produce and sat in dharna in front of the APMC administrative office and shouted slogans against the Government, APMC staff and traders. They alleged that the Government had connived with the traders and were trying to deny the farmers the benefits of price rise in open markets. The farmers said: “Tur dal is sold in the retail market at Rs. 120 a kg. Traders are trying to grab the produce from the farmers at a very low rate.” They demanded a minimum price of Rs. 5,500 a quintal. Although junior government officials rushed to the spot, the farmers were annoyed that senior officials had not made an appearance to solve the problem. The dharna continued till late in the evening.