NEW DELHI: Seeking various relief measures for farmers in Uttar Pradesh, BJP MP Varun Gandhi on Sunday wrote to state Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath demanding substantial rise in sugarcane prices, bonus on wheat and paddy, doubling the amount of PM KISAN scheme and subsidy on diesel.
Gandhi, a three-term MP from Uttar Pradesj, has been advocating for re-engaging with protesting farmers to reach a common ground. In the two page letter to Adityanath, the Pilibhit MP listed out all the problems and demands of the farmers and at the same time also suggested solutions for the same.
किसानों की बुनियादी समस्याओं को इंगित करता मेरा पत्र उत्तर प्रदेश के माननीय मुख्यमंत्री श्री योगी आदित्यनाथ जी के नाम, उम्मीद है कि भूमिपुत्रों की बात ज़रूर सुनी जाएगी; pic.twitter.com/4rw8AduP0y
— Varun Gandhi (@varungandhi80) September 12, 2021
Tagging the letter on his Twitter handle, Gandhi said he has written to Adityanath indicating the problems of the farmers. “I hope issues of the sons of the soil will be heard,” he tweeted in Hindi.
In the letter, Gandhi suggested increasing the sugarcane selling price to Rs 400 per quintal that is currently fixed at Rs 315 per quintal in Uttar Pradesh. Cane is mainly grown in western UP, which is the epicentre of the farmers’ protest in the state against the Centre’s farm laws.
Farmers should be given additional bonus of Rs 200 per quintal above the minimum support price (MSP) of wheat and paddy, Gandhi said in the letter. He also demanded that the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) scheme should be doubled to Rs 12,000 per annum for farmers with the state government contributing Rs 6,000 from its own funds.
The PM KISAN scheme is an initiative by the Centre through which all farmers will get up to Rs 6,000 per year as minimum income support.
Sharing the farmers’ concern of high prices of electricity and diesel, Gandhi in the letter requested the UP Chief Minister to give subsidy of Rs 20 per litre on diesel to farmers and reduce the power prices with immediate effect.
Earlier on September 5, when large number of farmers gathered in Muzaffarnagar for a mahapanchayt organised by the Samyukt Kisan Morcha against the three farm laws, Gandhi had said the government should re-engage with them to reach common ground as they are “our own flesh and blood”.
“Lakhs of farmers have gathered in protest today in Muzaffarnagar. They are our own flesh and blood. We need to start re-engaging with them in a respectful manner: understand their pain, their point of view and work with them in reaching common ground,” Gandhi had tweeted by posting a video of the large crowd in attendance.
The mahapanchyat was held ahead of the crucial UP assembly polls early next year. The farmers have been protesting against the three farm laws at the borders of the national capital. Several rounds of discussions were also held between the representatives of protesting farmers’ unions and Union ministers but talks have remained inconclusive.
The Centre has been insisting that the reforms have given farmers new opportunity to sell their produce and rejected the criticism that the laws are aimed at doing away with the MSP regime and agricultural markets.