Hundreds of cane growers on Tuesday staged a dharna in front of the mini-secretariat here, demanding an assurance from the government to fulfil the promises it made last week.
Farmers from Hoshiarpur, Gurdaspur and Kapurthala districts had converged in the city to meet the administration and convey their concern over the uncertainty prevailing on running of sugar mills. The cane growers had held a massive protest in Mukerian on August 20.
"Despite the written agreement between the farmers and the administration on August 20, there has been no official statement from the government regarding fulfilment of our demands," said Kamalpreet Singh Kaki, convener of Pagri Sambhal Jatta, a forum created to seek justice for farmers.
"The administration had promised on behalf of the government that sugar mills will start running from November 10 and that all outstanding dues will be cleared by September 10, but there has been no confirmation from any state official concerned or sugar mill managements which have taken a decision to not crush sugarcane in the coming season. It has caused anxiety among farmers," Kaki added.
He warned that if cane growers demands were not met by August 31, over 1 lakh farmers would gather in Jalandhar on September 2 and block road and rail traffic.
"We had come to the city today to remind the administration but officials' attitude made it amply clear that the agreement was only a ploy to disperse the agitating farmers and nothing else. It prompted us to sit on a dharna," he claimed.