Chamaras Malipatil, State honorary president of the Karnataka Rajya Raita Sangh and Hasiru Sene, has threatened to close down the national highway near Hitnal Cross in Hosapete of Ballari district with a protest on July 21 to urge the State government to waive farm loans completely and announce a special package for the empowerment of rural areas immediately.
He was addressing a press conference in Raichur on Thursday.
Mr. Malipatil said that the State government was playing with the farmers by not fulfilling their long-pending demands, including complete loan waiver. Therefore, it has been decided to close down the national highway to urge the government for immediate action on their demands. “Several thousands of farmers from 26 States across the country are expected to take part in the protest,” he added.
Asking Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy to keep the promises that he made with regard to higher pension for aged persons and pregnant women, along with loan waiver for farmers, he said that the government announced a waiver of Rs. 2 lakh each for loans taken up to December 31, 2017, approximately totalling to Rs. 34,000 crore. But, in reality, the loan waiver will come to between Rs. 15,000 crore and Rs. 18,000 crore as there are several conditions to be fulfilled. Therefore, the government should waive loans taken from 2004 till date, he said.
The farmer leader said that the Union government had announced that it would announce minimum support price for farm produces. But, it was not preventing produces being purchased for prices less than the minimum price in the open market and protect the interests of farmers, he said and added that both the Union and State governments are merely employing tactics to mislead farmers.
Laxmangowda Kadgamdoddi, Sugurayya Swamy, Basavanagowda, Dodda Basavanagowda, Vishwanath Reddy Jinur, Amaresh and others were present.
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