New Delhi [India], September 27 (ANI): Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM), a coalition of farmers' unions, on Monday said its call for a Bharat Bandh received an "unprecedented and historic" response from more than 23 states.
"Reports have been pouring in about the overwhelmingly positive and resounding response to the Bharat Bandh call put out by Samyukt Kisan Morcha, to mark 10 long months of peaceful protests with rightful demands from the 'annadaatas' of the country. Spontaneous participation from various sections of society was witnessed in most places. The Bandh was marked peacefully, without a single untoward incident reported from anywhere, from more than 23 states of India," read the official release by the farmer organization.
SKM congratulated and complimented citizens of India who wholeheartedly and peacefully made today's Bharat Bandh a huge success and also extends its appreciation to some state governments. Many fraternal and other organisations and numerous political parties extended their support, the release said.
Reports have come in from hundreds of locations from Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Jharkhand, Kerala, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Pondicherry, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and West Bengal about the Bandh, and numerous events to accompany the same. In Punjab alone, there were more than 500 locations in which people gathered to express their support to the Bandh, and their participation in the farmers' movement. Similarly, the Bandh witnessed numerous non-farmer associations stand in solidarity with farmers, and also raise their own issues. Lakhs of citizens took part in the Bandh events today.
There was a pan-India mobilisation around the same time last year. Later on, on December 8th 2020 during the various rounds of talks with the Government, there was one more Bandh call put out by SKM. After talks broke down completely in late January 2021, there was a Bandh call again by SKM on March 26th 2021, followed by today's Bharat Bandh.
The Morcha informed that today's events were marked by farmer deaths and more details are being collected about the same.
Sugarcane farmers have issued an ultimatum to the BJP state government led by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath about the "measly" hike announced on sugarcane prices in the state and declared that this is cheating by the government. "Farmers say that they have been insulted by the BJP government. The meagre 25 rupees hike does not even cover the officially accepted cost of production per quintal of sugarcane and it is completely irrational to announce unjust prices like this," the release said.
Farmers have announced that they are not ready to settle for anything less than Rs 425/quintal of sugarcane and this is based on what the BJP promised in its own manifesto but did not implement and the increased costs, the official release said.
Shaheed Bhagat Singh's 114th birth anniversary will be marked tomorrow, September 28th, by SKM and the farmers' movement. SKM had put out a call to youth and students to come join the morchas in large numbers tomorrow.
Tomorrow, there is a Kisan Mahapanchayat being organised in Rajim town in Chhattisgarh. This assembly of farmers is likely to see the participation of several SKM leaders.
Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) has called a 'Bharat Bandh' today to mark the first anniversary of the enactment of the three farm laws.
The bandh has garnered support from more than 500 farmer organizations, 15 trade unions, political parties, six state governments and varied sections of society. (ANI)