Mumbai, June 5: Agiitating farmers in Maharashtra have called for a State-wide bandh on Monday as part of their ongoing strike. The decision was taken at a meeting of the farmers morcha in Nashik on Sunday, which also said the agitation will continue till their demands for loan waivers is met by the government. The bandh will exclude Mumbai.
The BJP's ruling partner the Shiv Sena also extended its support to the bandh call.
The prices of vegetables and fruits have been on an upward path in cities, including Mumbai, due to the drastic fall in supplies from key production centres like Nashik and Ahmednagar.
Farmers, who have been on war path since June 1 for their demands, including waiver of farm loan and other concessions like lower power tariff, continued the agitation for the fourth day on Sunday in parts of Maharashtra, including Nashik and Ahmednagar, which have become nerve centres of the protest.
A meeting of farmers' representatives from different parts of the state under the aegis of the Kisan Kranti Morcha, that is spearheading the agitation, was held at the agriculture produce market committee in Nashik on Sunday afternoon.
During the meeting several resolutions were passed and a decision to go ahead with the Maharashtra bandh excluding Mumbai was taken. The call for the bandh was given two days back.
A farmer leader from Nashik said, "The call for Maharashtra bandh had already been given, but it was suspended after a delegation of farmers met the chief minister.
"Now, as the government tried to sabotage our stir, we have decided to go ahead with 'Maharashtra bandh' on Monday.
As part of the 'Maharashtra bandh' today, the farmers' groups have decided to lock down the government offices, another farmer leader said.
On Sunday, the Shiv Sena extended its full support to the ongoing agitation, including the call for the Maharashtra bandh.
According to one of the resolutions passed during the Nashik meeting, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadanvis should implement the farmers' demands instead of just giving assurances.
Demand for withdrawal of cases registered against the farmers at different places across the state during the stir was also part of the resolution, Bankar said.
A core committee meeting of the KKM will be held in Mumbai on June 7 and a statewide convention of farmers will be held in Nashik on June 8 to decide their future course of action, he added.
After holding talks with leaders of farmers on late Friday night, the chief minister had on Friday announced that his government would waive loans of farmers with small land- holding. He said 80 per cent of such farmers are in Vidarbha and Marathwada who will benefit by the move.
After the announcement, some farmer leaders announced that the stir stands withdrawn. However, a section of farmers had expressed their resolve to continue with the agitation.