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Chouhan calls off fast

14 Juin 2017

Mandsaur: Curfew was lifted completely from Madhya Pradesh's Mandsaur district, the epicentre of a violent stir by farmers, as the situation there remained peaceful on Sunday.

The Maharashtra government said it will write off the loans of most of its 1.34 crore farmers, and Madhya Pradesh announced a crackdown against those short-changing cultivators as the two BJP-ruled states rushed on Sunday to placate growing resentment from the agriculture sector.

With Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan ending his indefinite fast for bringing back peace in the state amid raging farmers" protests, the Congress party on Monday dubbed the former's act as sheer "drama' and said in spite of such tactics, the condition of the farmers remains unchanged. It may be recalled that Chouhan had gone on indefinite fast to broker peace with the farmers and he had said that he is willing to give his life for the benefit of farmers.

The unrest in both states coincides with a larger resentment toward the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government at the Centre. "Those whose properties have been damaged will be compensated, but it will be investigated who were behind this violence".

They had appealed him to break the fast.

The previous day, police had opened fire to control the crowds at a rally in Mandsaur, where the farmers were demanding a better price for their crops and waiver of loans. Following that meeting, Chouhan told the media that he had assured the grieving family members that those responsible for the police firing would be punished, and that the families had asked him to discontinue his fast.

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"After all, against whom has he started his fast at Dussehra Maidan?"

"We are going to buy different varieties of pulses at MSP", the chief minister said.

Besides, an Agricultural Costs and Marketing Commission would also be set up to ensure remunerative prices of farm produce.

The activists, around 30 in number, were stopped by the police at the Dhodhar toll plaza in Jaora town as prohibitory orders were in force across Mandsaur district.

A Land Use Advisory Committee will be set up as per the panel recommendations, which will advise the farmers on cultivation-related issues. "I denied, and said they were free to look around but they started beating me and my husband with sticks".

Chouhan calls off fast