Braving the hot and humid weather, members of Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ugrahan) on Tuesday staged a massive protest in front of the deputy commissioner's office here.
The union was demanding compensation for farmers for the drought-like conditions prevailing in the state. "The UPA government should declare the state as drought hit. It should provide Rs 10,000 per acre as compensation to farmers across the state," said state secretary of the union, Joginder Singh.
Addressing the gathering, Singh said the state farmers had a proven track record. "We produce the maximum paddy crop in the country, but the Central government has chosen to ignore our plight," he said.
He said the deficient rainfall had increased the production inputs of farmers. The conditions were worst in the Malwa region where the crop had been damaged due to the long, dry spell. "The farmers were spending around Rs 10,000 per acre to save their crop. They must be repaid this amount," he said.
He said the state government had failed to provide the promised eight-hour power supply to the farmers forcing them to us diesel pumps to draw water for irrigation.
Singh said the government should provide them diesel at 50% subsidised rates. "They must ensure us sufficient power supply, and create alternative sources for irrigation."