Besides demanding a waiver of their crop loans, TN farmers are protesting in support of the farmers in Madhya Pradesh.

From Jantar Mantar to Chepauk Action shifts to TN as farmers resume protest for drought relief
news Farmers’ issue Friday, June 09, 2017 - 13:14

More than a month after calling off their demonstration in New Delhi, more than 50 farmers from Tamil Nadu began a protest at Chepauk in Chennai on Friday demanding drought relief and for their loans to be waived off by the state government. They are also protesting in support of the farmers in Madhya Pradesh, after their demonstration turned violent on Tuesday. Five farmers were killed at Mandsaur on Tuesday in police firing.

Farmers in TN say they will continue their protest until July 10, if their demands are not met.  “If the state government does not do give us justice, we will die here, what else can we do?” asked Iyyakannu, the Tamil Nadu chief of the Desiya Thenidhiya Nathigal Inaippu Vivasayigal Sangam.

Addressing media on Friday, Iyyakannu said that the state government has not provided them with any drought relief funds till now. “For the last seven months, the Tamil government has been refusing to provide drought relief fund to the farmers and have not waived off our loans,” he said.

Farmers from different parts of the country had conducted a meeting in New Delhi on May 21 to decide on the next steps. “The protests in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh is the result of our meeting on May 21, 2017. We condemn the attack on Madhya Pradesh farmers. On June 16, we have one more meeting in Delhi, after which, farmers will conduct protests in the entire country,” said Iyyakannu.

For 41 days, farmers from Tamil Nadu had protested at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi demanding that their loans be waived, pension of Rs 5000 for farmers above the age of 60, the interlinking of rivers and the formation of Cauvery Board among others. From holding skulls in their hands and snakes in their mouth to running nude in the South Block, these farmers resorted to a number of dramatic protests to grab the Centre’s attention.

The protest was temporarily called off on April 23 after the Chief Minister Edapaddi Palanisamy met them and promised to take action.


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