A farmer in Sangli district was killed in police firing on Monday, while another died after a truck ran over him near Indapur in Pune district as the agitation by sugarcane growers for higher prices turned violent.
Western Maharashtra has been witnessing large-scale protests led by farmers organisations, who are demanding Rs3,000 per tonne for their produce, while the sugarcane factories, most of which are controlled by NCP and Congress leaders, are willing to pay Rs2,300. The state has refused to hold any negotiations this time, saying it can’t determining the rates.
The violence broke out after the police arrested MP Raju Shetty, chief of Swabhimani Shetakari Sanghatana (SSS), the farmers’ body spearheading the protests since six days, for threatening to block all major roads and curb leaders from reaching their native places for Diwali.
Chandrakant Nalawade, from Vasagade village in Sangli, was killed after police opened fire on protesters who set a police vehicle ablaze and tried to lock in an official. At Indapur, Chandrakant Kokate, was killed when farmers led by SSS held a rasta roko.