Politics over the farmers’ agitation in Uttar Pradesh is gaining heat with the Congress joining Wednesday’s bandh called by a peasants’ outfit, demanding higher compensation for land acquired by the Mayawati government for its Yamuna expressway project.
The stir received a major boost when Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi paid an unannounced visit on Saturday to Tappal village in Aligarh district, where farmers have been protesting for the past four weeks now. Gandhi assured the farmers that he would raise their concerns at appropriate fora.
Congress is taking the issue very seriously as it has thrown open a window of opportunity for the party to strengthen its position in Uttar Pradesh.
Congress general secretary in-charge of Uttar Pradesh Digvijaya Singh held discussions with farmers before meeting party chief Sonia Gandhi on Monday. He is meeting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday to apprise him about the farmers’ demand.
In the meeting with Singh, the farmers are understood to have asked for a land acquisition policy similar to that of Haryana, fixing of same rate of land for township and road and amendment in the land acquisition rate act.