In order to wean away sugarcane farmers from Opposition camp, the BSP government on Tuesday assured the Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) headed by Mahendra Singh Tikait to ensure adequate price to them.
The government’s quick move was presumably aimed at taking sheen out of the Rashtriya Lok Dal movement in western UP. Ajit Singh, who held a panchayat in Meerut on Tuesday said that there should be uniformity in the rate. He said some mills in West had already started paying Rs 205 per quintal. Perturbed over government’s move Ajit Singh accused Tikait of abject surrender before the mill owners. The BKU has however denied the charge.
The government hopes that mill owners would agree to pay around Rs 220 per quintal to farmers. Immediately after a BKU delegation led by Tikait’s son Rakesh Tikait met Principal Secretaries Shailesh Krishna and Netram at the Chief Minister’s secretariat, the government issued fresh directives to the divisional commissioners to talk to sugar mill owners to increase the bonus.
Rakesh Tikait, expressing satisfaction over the meeting, too said that farmers would accept something between Rs 215 and Rs 220 per quintal. “But not less than Rs 215 per quintal” Tikait told newsmen after meeting.
The government, which has already fixed state advisory price (SAP) of Rs 165 and Rs 170 per quintal, said in a statement that commissioners had been asked to coordinate between the farmers and mill owners so that adequate price could be fixed. Apart from the SAP the mill owners have already announced bonus of Rs 25 per quintal.
Agreeing to the demands of increasing price of wheat for next rabi crop (Summer crop) the state government has decided to write to the central government on the issue. The government has also asked proper representation of farmers at the meeting of Kisan Bandhu in the districts.