International Yoga Day: Farmers perform shavasana, block roads to demand relief
Farmers across India have been protesting over the past few weeks as prices of farm produce have crashed and they are demanding loan waivers.
A farm crisis sweeping several states left its mark on the International Yoga Day celebrations on Wednesday as several politicians used the occasion to send a message about the agricultural distress.
Farmers and Madhya Pradesh Congress leaders performed ‘Shavasana’ (a corpse pose) in different programmes to protest against chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, whom they hold responsible for the death of five farmers in police firing in Mandsaur two weeks ago.
In Bhopal, a group of farmers under the banner of Bharatiya Kisan Mazdoor Sangh headed by Shivkumar Sharma ‘Kakkaji’ performed Shavasana.
In Uttar Pradesh where chief minister Yogi Adityanath approved a loan waiver two months ago, hundreds of farmers blocked roads and highways to perform shavasana.
The members of Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU) and their supporters demanded immediate compensation for the families of farmers killed in Madhya Pradesh.
“ We selected shavasana because we wanted to show the government that farmers are reduced merely into a dead body if they are not treated well. Farmer don’t deserve bullets if they demand good rates or loan waiver ,” said Bhartiya Kisan Union’s Alok Varma.
A group of farmers with BKU blocked the traffic on the Delhi- Dehradun highway in Daurala area on Wednesday by. Dharmendra Malik, the Union’s spokesperson said that the farmers also performed Yoga on Delhi- Saharanpur- Hardwar highway at Chutmalpur in district Saharanpur, Mansoorpur, Rampur Tiraha, Lalukheri and Budhana in district Muzaffarnagar, Hapur chungi in Hapur and many other locations on different highways.
There was another group that blocked the Delhi- Pauri highway in Mawana town. Nawab Singh Ahlawat and Sanjay Dauralia were among the BKU leaders that led the protests in Daurala.
In Mumbai, chief minister Devendra Fadnavis performed yoga with 600 farmer’s children. “Yoga, which is integral part of India culture, not only helps with physical fitness but also boosts efficiently and confidence. I appeal to make Yoga an inseparable part of your life,” the CM tweeted after the 30-minute session. This came in the backdrop of farmers demanding a full loan waiver from the Maharashtra government to offset a price crash following a bumper crop.