Thursday is Day 5 of the Round 2 of farmers protest in Delhi.

TN MLAs pay hike Protesting farmers in Delhi hit themselves with slipper for voting them into power
news Protest Thursday, July 20, 2017 - 15:16

For the farmers from Tamil Nadu who are back in New Delhi to protest and seek relief from the union government following the agrarian distress, the announcement of a massive pay hike for MLAs of Tamil Nadu seemed like rubbing salt to their injuries. It wasn’t just anger that they felt, but also regret. Holding themselves responsible for electing such MLAs to office, the farmers hit themselves with slippers in front of the media on Thursday morning.

Thursday is Day 5 of the Round 2 of farmers protest in Delhi. From biting into dead snakes and rats to drinking their own urine, the farmers have tried several shocking acts to attract the attention of the governments, seeking a complete loan waiver.

P Ayyakannu, President of the Association for Interlinking National-South Indian Rivers, addressing the media, said that before elections, politicians were saying that farmers are the backbone of the state, but now the state is treating farmers like slaves. “Yesterday, the assembly provided a pay hike to all the legislators but they have not fulfilled any demands of the farmers,” he said.

Speaking to TNM, Premkumar, a member of the association, said, “On Wednesday, they increased the salaries of the legislators, condemning that and feeling guilty about voting them to power, we hit ourselves with slippers. Edapaddi Palanisamy had earlier met the Prime Minister and promised us that he will fulfil all our demands but he did not do anything.”

The farmers say that they will continue their protest till their demands are accepted by the state and union governments. “We want the governments to waive-off the loans of the farmers, we should be paid the right price for our yields and be provided insurance. Farmers above the age of 60 years must be provided with a pension of Rs.5000 and all the rivers in India must be inter-linked,” said Premkumar.

On April 23, 2017, farmers had suspended their first round of protests in Delhi after meeting Chief Minister Edapaddi Palanisamy. They had protested for 41 days and had said that they will restart their protest on May 25 if their demands are not met. They had taken various desperate steps to get attention from the central government, like shaving half of their moustache off, tonsuring their head, putting dead snakes and rats into their mouths and carrying skulls of the dead farmers.