Farmers belonging to various organisations representing 26 states came together and decided to form a single national group. They urged the Telangana chief minister Mr K Chandrasekhar Rao to head the group. Scores of farmers from various states arrived in Telangana to undertake a field study. They went around some districts, inspected tanks, agricultural fields, and irrigation reservoirs, and came to know the farmer-friendly welfare schemes being extended by the Telangana government such as Rythu Bandhu, Rythu Bheema, the establishment of village-level procurement centres, and free power and irrigation water among others.
They were surprised by the numerous schemes launched by the visionary chief minister Mr KCR and said they would demand their respective state governments for the same. During a day-long interaction with the chief minister Mr KCR, the farmers listed out the problems being faced by them in their states. Lack of support to farmers, absence of remunerative price, and lack of water and power. “The farmers are least cared for,” they said in unison.
Farmers said they were all unorganised and hence lack bargaining capacity. It was decided to unite all the smaller and splinter groups and farmers’ associations at the state level to form a national level association under the leadership of Mr KCR who proved himself to be farmer-friendly.
They further complained that though some farmers’ associations were affiliated with some political parties, the leaders hardly give them enough time to attend to farmers’ problems. The farmers complained that the BJP-led government at centre failed to address their issues and instead tried to bring out draconian farm laws. They had to protest for over a year to force the government to withdraw its black laws. They ultimately succeeded but they desire to have welfare schemes that are being implemented in Telangana state.
By Gollapudi Srinivasa Rao