TN farmers resort to self-beating with chappals to protest against salary hike of MLAs
New Delhi, July 20: Look at the irony of the entire situation. While the drought-hit farmers from Tamil Nadu are being compelled to leave their homes to protest in the national capital, back in the state, on Wednesday, the members of legislative assembly (MLAs) got almost 100 per cent salary hike.
The poor and debt-ridden farmers of the southern state, who have come to Delhi on Sunday to stage an indefinite protest at Jantar Mantar, appalled by the salary hike of their leaders, beat themselves up with chappals (slippers) on Thursday.
The protesting farmers at Jantar Mantar said that they were very unhappy with the salary hike of Tamil Nadu MLAs.
The Tamil Nadu government on Wednesday almost doubled the salary and allowances of MLAs, taking their new pay packet to Rs 1.05 lakh per month.
As per the announcement made by Chief Minister K Palaniswami in the state assembly, the salary and allowances of legislators had been raised from the existing Rs 55,000 to Rs 1,05,000 per month, an increase of 90.91 per cent.
The farmers have come to Delhi for a second time within a gap of a few months to demand loan waiver, better prices for crops and interlinking of rivers, to name a few.
First time, they came to Delhi in March to protest. The protest ended on April 23, after Tamil Nadu CM assured the farmers that their demands would be met. However, that did not happen and they are being forced to come back to the national capital once again.
Lamenting about the plight of the farmers, Ayakannu, a leader of the agitating farmers, said that being a farmer is worse than being a beggar.
The southern state of Tamil Nadu is facing one of its worst droughts in 140 years. According to reports around 19 farmers in the state have committed suicide in the last 10 months.
In fact, the protesting farmers have brought with them skulls of dead farmers who have committed suicide because of crop failure and rising debts.