On 29th and 30th of November, 2018, almost one lakh (100,000) farmers from all over India are expected to participate in a protest called Kisan Mukti March in Delhi organized by the All India Kisan Sangharsh Co-ordination Committee (AIKSCC).
To supplement their efforts, Nation for Farmers, a solidarity group has been mobilizing urban, middle class citizens across the country in order to highlight that the agrarian crisis is, in fact, a national one.
In a situation where over three lakh farmers have committed suicide in India in the last 20 years, the organizers believe that the agrarian crisis is no more about food security but a crisis of our civilization itself.
The Kisan Mukti March has been inspired by the actions of farmers, agricultural labourers and displaced workers from Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh.
However, this time, the AIKSCC is demanding statute-based rights for farmers and agricultural workers through the passing of two Kisan Mukti Bills – The Farmers’ Freedom from Indebtedness Bill 2018 and The Farmers’ Right to Guaranteed Remunerative Minimum Support Prices for Agricultural Commodities Bill 2018 .
The drafts of the Kisan Mukti Bills were first tabled in the Kisan Mukti Sansad of women farmers on November 20th, 2017 and have now been introduced in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha as private members’ bills.
Nation for Farmers recognizes the importance of these Kisan Mukti Bills that address the problem of skewed minimum support prices and the loan waivers, an important aspect of the mounting credit crisis.
“We join the AIKSCC in asking for a special 21-day joint session of parliament on the agrarian crisis where both these bills can be passed,” Nation for Farmers said. “Additionally, we would want the special session to discuss the mega water and credit crisis, a discussion on the recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission report and the rights of landless agricultural labourers, women farmers and minority, Dalit and Adivasi agricultural workers.”
In this regard, a Dilli Chalo petition is addressed to the President of India. Students from across the country, particularly from the four large public-funded universities of Delhi – Delhi University, Ambedkar University, Jawahar Lal Nehru University, and Jamia Millia Islamia, are working as volunteers to help the protesting farmers.
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