Maharashtra dairy farmers agitating dairynews7x7

The agitations were held in 14 largest milk-producing districts of northern, western and Marathwada regions of the state with hundreds of farmers taking to the streets, shouting slogans for their demands.

Thousands of dairy farmers in Maharashtra launched a 3-day long agitation demanding fair remunerative prices as per law for their milk products and to end exploitation by private milk-producing companies, leaders said here on monday.

Also read : Farmers in Maharashtra to get Fair, Remunerative Price (FRP) for milk

The agitations were held in 14 largest milk-producing districts of northern, western and Marathwada regions of the state with hundreds of farmers taking to the streets, shouting slogans for their demands.

Milk Producer Farmers Action Committee (MPFAC)

Farmers protested by emptying cans of milk on roadsides, feeding stray animals or offering to temples to draw the state’s attention to their plight, said Milk Producer Farmers Action Committee (MPFAC) Coordinator Ajit Nawale.

“We have written to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and Dairy Development Minister Sunil Kedar to immediately accept our 8-point demands in the interest of the dairy farmers and the consumers at large,” said All India Kisan Sabha President Ashok Dhawale.

On account of the long pandemic lockdown, the milk farmers are virtually on the verge of starvation along with their cattle owing to unfair or very low remunerative prices for their milk.

Rs 15 per liter increment demanded in milk prices

“We have demanded hiking the minimum remuneration by Rs 15 for cow milk, sold at Rs.20 now, and buffalo milk sold at Rs.45 currently, to ensure the dairy farmers get better returns and recover their costs,” said Nawale.

The MPFAC has also demanded that the state government should end the exploitation of dairy farmers by the 350-odd big companies selling branded milk products.

Also Read : Dairy farmers demand Rs10/liter Milk subsidy directly to their Bank accounts

“In Gujarat, the state government encourages only ‘Amul’ and Karnataka supports ‘Mahanandi’ But, in Maharashtra, 74 percent of the milk production is bought by the corporates, and the rest 24 percent goes to the traditional milk cooperatives which are now in shambles owing to the politicians,” Dr. Nawale said.

Subsidy of Rs 5 per liter to covid hit farmers

The MPFAC has sought a subsidy of Rs.5 per litre to farmers who suffered during the lockdown period, enact suitable laws to prevent the ‘loot’ of the dairy farmers, ensure FRP as per law for milk, share in profits made by the corporates dabbling in the dairy business, legal guarantee to ensure milk is available to consumers at affordable prices.

Referring to the cheating of the milk farmers by faulty milk-meters, the MPFAC seeks all dairy organisations must use only certified milk-meters and appoint independent inspectors to check them on regular basis.

Cattle insurance scheme

Dhawale said the state government should announce a grant and launch an animal insurance scheme for the dairy farmers for their long-term security.

The protests on Monday — a year after a weeklong state-level agitation in August 2020 — were carried out simultaneously in Kolhapur, Sangli, Satara, Ahmednagar, Aurangabad, Beed, Pune, Nashik, Jalgaon, Latur, Osmanabad, Solapur, Parbhani and Nanded, said a Spokesperson P.S. Prasad.

Source : The Free Press Journal Aug 9 2021