Farmers protest non-purchase of sugarcane by mill management

Farmers protest non-purchase of sugarcane by mill management

Farmers hold an agitation in Amritsar on Sunday. Tribune Photo

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, December 1

Activists of the Kisan Sangharsh Committee on Sunday started an agitation outside a Sugar Mill at Butar Sevian village belonging to a prominent political leader of the ruling party. They were holding agitation against the mill after its management refused to mill sugarcanes of several farmers belonging to the Hargobindpur area.

Sarvan Singh Pandher, general secretary of the farmer organisation, said the management of the mill was indulging in false propaganda against the farmers while claiming that the farmers had created ruckus and law and order problem in the mill complex last year. He said it was doing all this under political influence. The organisation also raised the issues of pending dues of the sugarcane farmers.

The organisation also threatened to intensify the agitation by stopping rail traffic from Tuesday in case the authorities turned a blind eye and did not take appropriate measures regarding their genuine demands.

Following the agitation, the police have deputed heavy force near the spot, said Vikram Jeet Duggal, SSP Amritsar rural.

According to information, the mill had debarred around nine farmers and refused to mill their sugarcane crop while alleging that they had created law and order problem in the mill complex last year. The mill management had even threatened to shut down the mill in case they were pressurised to mill their crop. When the matter reached to the Cane Commissioner of Punjab, it directed that these farmers could mill their crop at Chadha Sugar Mill at Kiri Afghana in Gurdaspur, it is learnt.

Sawinder Singh Chutala, senior vice-president of the organisation, on the other hand termed it a false propaganda. He said they were holding demonstration on the other issues concerning to the farming community, including burning of stubble. He said the Punjab Government should increase the compensation to Rs 6,000 per acre from the current Rs 2,500 per acre, besides cancellation of cases registered against farmers allegedly involved in burning of paddy straw.

The organisation also sought cancellation of notification for acquiring 14 acres of agricultural land for setting up a toll plaza at Mannan village.

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