Mumbai, Mar 28: CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury will address a farmers rally in Nashik tomorrow, and discuss agrarian issues like waiver of loans, electricity bills and remunerative prices for crops as per the recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission.
The rally, organised by the Maharashtra Rajya Kisan Sabha (affiliated to the All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS)) will also focus on issue like water, fodder, work and crop compensation to drought-hit areas of Marathwada and Vidarbha regions, AIKS National Joint Secretary Ashok Dhawale told reporters today.
The rally will demand stringent implementation of the Forest Rights Act (FRA) and forest land, pasture land and temple land to be vested in the name of the actual tillers (owners), he said.
Around a lakh farmers are expected to attend the rally, being organised in the light of the severe drought situation and the alarming rise in farmer suicides, he said.
The rally will be followed by an indefinite peaceful sit-in till the government concedes the demands of farmers of Maharashtra, Dhawale added.
Farmers from 27 districts of the state will take part in the rally and (at a) public meeting at the Golf Club Maidan at Nashik, he said.
According to Dhawale, AIKS general secretary Hannan Mollah and senior journalist P Sainath will be other speakers at the rally.
In 2015, 3,228 debt-ridden farmers have been forced to commit suicide, the largest number being in Vidarbha and Marathwada regions, he claimed.
Since 1995, over 65,000 farmers have committed suicide in Maharashtra, this being an ignominious record in the country as a whole, he said, adding Maharashtra has become a veritable "graveyard of farmers".
The policies of the BJP-led (Narendra) Modi and (Devendra) Fadnavis governments are ranged against farmers, he said.