Farmers cutting across party lines took out a protest march here on Thursday, demanding repeal of the recently introduced three farm laws.
Farmers under the aegis of the All India Kisan Coordination Committee arrived here in tractors to express solidarity with their counterparts agitating in New Delhi.
As the rally began from the Kurnool road bypass centre, farmers shouted slogans demanding withdrawal of the decision by the State government to fix power meters to farm pumpsets. They alleged that the YSRCP government took the decision at the behest of the Centre.
Cong., Left parrties join
Joined by the activists from the opposition parties including the Congress, CPI and CPI (M), members of farmers’ organisations gathered at the Collectorate. They demanded that the State-regulated markets be strengthened and statutory backing be provided to the MSP regime.
“It is unfortunate that the NDA government chose to leave the farmers at the mercy of traders and denied them the advantage of collective bargaining in the State-regulated markets,” said AIKCC Prakasam district convenor Ch. Ranga Rao.
Participating in the protest, AIKCC State co-convenor and Andhra Pradesh Rythu Sangam general secretary K.V.V. Prasad demanded setting up of a Farmers’ Commission to address the problems related to indebtedness of farmers, which was pushing them to resort to the extreme steps.
Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee State vice-president Sripathi Prakasam demanded an apology from the ruling YSRCP and the lead Opposition Telugu Desam Party for ‘supporting the anti-farmer legislations’.
“Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy and TDP president N. Chandrababu Naidu should say no to pro-corporate stance, failing which the farmers would teach them a lesson,” said Congress farmers’ wing State vice-president V. Rajagopala Reddy.
Organisation for Protection of Democracy State vice-president Ch. Sudhakar said, “The corporate-friendly Acts can not ameliorate the sufferings of farmers and resolve the agrarian crisis, given the ever-increasing cost of cultivation and lack of remunerative prices for the farm produce.”