The areca growers of Sagar taluk will march from Avinahalli to Sagar town on November 17 demanding compensation for the farmers who suffered loss due to the leaf spot disease.
The 10-km-long march has been organised under the banner of Raita Hagu Kulikarmikara Hitarakshana Vedike — a forum for farmers and agriculture labourers.
Honorary president of the forum Mallikarjun Hakre, former president of Sagar taluk panchayat, said that areca farmers and the people of the taluk would take part in the march, irrespective of their political affiliation.
“This is not a political event. We are taking out the padayatra in the interest of areca farmers, who have been the backbone of the economy in the Malnad region,” he said.
Hundreds of farmers suffered losses due to the leaf spot disease that hit vast tracts of areca plantations. The yield in farms had come down substantially. Farmers are unable to bear the losses. “The government and universities have failed to provide proper medicine to tackle the spread of the disease. Repeated demands to the officers concerned have failed to yield a solution to the problem,” he said.
The protesters would demand fair monetary compensation for farmers, besides proper research and medicine to tackle the disease, he said.
Representatives of the forum organised a meeting of farmers at Tumari in Sagar taluk on November 10 to seek support for the march. Former president of Tumari gram panchayat G.T. Satyanarayana was among the participants.