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MH Cotton Farmers Demand Rs 5000 per Quintal Subsidy: Rally to Voice Concerns

The farmers' rally serves as a powerful call for government intervention and support to address the pressing issues faced by cotton farmers in Maharashtra, ensuring the sustainability and prosperity of this vital agricultural sector.

Shivam Dwivedi
MH Cotton Farmers Demand Rs 5000 per Quintal Subsidy: Rally to Voice Concerns (Photo Caption: PTI)
MH Cotton Farmers Demand Rs 5000 per Quintal Subsidy: Rally to Voice Concerns (Photo Caption: PTI)

Cotton farmers in Yavatmal district of Maharashtra are planning to stage a rally on May 18 to address their grievances and demand support from the government. Kishore Tiwari, a prominent farm activist, announced in a press release that the farmers will be seeking a subsidy of Rs 5,000 per quintal and financial assistance for those who suffered losses due to excessive rainfall.

This year, cotton cultivation has reached a record 10.2 million hectares as the price of this vital textile component surged to Rs 14,000 per quintal last year. Unfortunately, the prices have plummeted to Rs 7,500 per quintal, leading many cotton farmers burdened with debt to take drastic measures, including suicide. Additionally, around 40 percent of cotton crops have been damaged by the excessive rainfall this season, exacerbating the farmers' plight.

Tiwari claimed that a staggering 3,300 cotton farmers have taken their lives in Maharashtra during this period. In an effort to draw the attention of both the central and state governments, the protesting farmers have organized a rally in Pandharkawada, known for its high farmer suicide rates. As a symbolic act, the farmers intend to set unsold cotton ablaze during the rally.

The key demands of the protesting farmers include a subsidy of Rs 5,000 per quintal and the implementation of an economic package by the government. Vijay Jawandhia, another prominent farm activist, will be leading the protest alongside Tiwari.

Tiwari emphasized the significance of cotton as Maharashtra's primary cash crop, playing a crucial role in the rural and agricultural economy of the state's underdeveloped regions. He attributed the decline in cotton exports from 6 million bales to 2 million bales this year to the central government's misguided policies and their lack of concern for the well-being of over 2 crore cotton farmers in India

Tiwari further claimed that this decline in exports was a result of efforts to protect the interests of textile mill owners, leading to a record import of 3 million bales of cotton.

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