UNPA meet on farmers' issues in Vijayawada

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Hyderabad, Nov 23 (UNI) The United National Progressive Alliance (UNPA) leaders would meet in Vijayawada tomorrow to discuss farmers' issues and chalk out a strategy to launch a movement against the ''anti-farmer'' policies of the Centre and the Congress-ruled states in the country.

Addressing the press here today, UNPA Convener and TDP President N Chandrababu Naidu said all the UNPA leaders, including Samajwadi Party President and former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav, National Lokdal leader Om Prakash Chautala and National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah, would participate in the meeting.

Alleging that the Congress-led UPA had failed to prevent the farmers from committing suicides, he said the UNPA would also discuss the problems of weavers and common man.

He also alleged that 1.50 lakh farmers committed suicide in the country since the UPA came to power.

Stating that the leaders would also take part in 'Rythu Garjana', a public meeting, after taking out a farmers' rally. It would organise farmers' rallies and meetings in all the states to raise the issues before the respective state governments.

''The UNPA was created with an ambition of forming a Third Front.

It would fight against the governments, which were adopting anti-people policies. People's issues are important to the UNPA and not the power,'' Mr Naidu added.

The TDP would continue its struggle until the Centre hiked the Minimum Support Price (MSP) for Paddy to Rs 1,000 per quintal.

Demanding that the Centre implement the M S Swaminathan Committee recommendations, he alleged that the Andhra Pradesh Government had failed to convince the Centre of increasing the MSP for Paddy.

To a query, Mr Naidu said, ''I am not a contender or an aspirant for the Prime Minister's post...our party was highlighting the state government's anti-poor policies and playing the role of a responsible Opposition.'' UNI AP VA SHB GC1619

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