Staff Reporter

All India Kissan Sabha plans demonstration in New Delhi on October 30

BHUBANESWAR: The All India Kissan Sabha (AIKS), the farmer wing of the Communist Party of India, on Saturday charged that the UPA Government was pursuing anti-peasant policies.

The AIKS is going to stage a demonstration by mobilising 15,000 people from different states to voice against policies at New Delhi on October 30.

Addressing a press conference here, AIKS general secretary Atul Anjan said, "our population is growing at rate of 2 per cent every year while our agricultural growth was estimated to be at 1.5 per cent. We are moving towards losing food sovereignty in next few years." National Commission on Farmers (NCF) had submitted a five-volume reports to the Centre in October last year, the UPA government was sitting over the reports since then, Mr. Anjan, who was a member of the commission, said.

He alleged that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was ignoring the sector while commandants in policymaking bodies were more concerned about urban economy.

"During NDA regime, about 18,600 farmers committed suicide, it did not change for better in UPA. As high as 19,000 farmers took the extreme step during last three years," Mr. Anjan said.

Crop insurance

In any case, the interest of farm loans should not exceed four per cent while small and poor farmers should be provided with zero-interest loans, he demanded.

"Kerala Government has made initiative in this regard. During last six months, the state government has paid interest-free loans for paddy crops while announcing Rs 180 crore package," the CPI’s National Executive Committee member said.

The party would also demand formulation policy of compulsory crop insurance and establishment of Farmers’ Relief Commission, which should be headed by a High Court judge, he said.

The UPA Government was importing wheat at higher price from USA and Canada while it was giving at lesser price to Indian wheat growers, Mr. Anjan charged.

Left parties were going to meet UPA leaders on October 5 when a ’definite’ decision would be taken on the issue, he said.