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Farmers, jaggery merchants stage dharna in Chittoor

Farmers, jaggery merchants stage dharna in Chittoor
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GD Nellore (Chittoor): Led by farmers' associations, farmers and jaggery merchants in large numbers from all over the district organised a huge rally...

GD Nellore (Chittoor): Led by farmers' associations, farmers and jaggery merchants in large numbers from all over the district organised a huge rally and staged a protest at the Collectorate here on Monday. Later, they submitted a memorandum to District Collector Solomon Arokia Raj. The farmers and merchants were protesting against the new rules being imposed on them. As per the rules no merchant can stock four tonnes of black jaggery at a given time. The protestors flayed the State government for neglecting their week-long agitations. Several sugarcane farmers are forced to commit suicides due to the government's present policies, they criticised. The farmers warned the government of intensifying their agitations if the restraints imposed are not rolled back. Chittoor: The sugarcane farmers, hamalis and transport operators on Monday joined the ongoing stir being organising by Groundnut and Jaggery Merchants Association demanding the immediate removal of restrictions on the production and storage of black jaggery. The sugarcane farmers also took out a massive rally in Chittoor town and extended their support to the Jaggery Merchant Association, which launched a stir few days back demanding the removal of restrictions on the black jaggery and cancel of a GO issued by the State Government in this regard. Farmers said that thousands of people in Chittoor district were eking out their living by producing jaggery and the State Government's decision would leave their livelihood in jeopardy. Later, leaders of different farmers associations and merchant associations addressed the huge gathering at CVKN College Grounds in the town. Speaking on the occasion, GV Jayaram Choudary, State President of Federation of Farmers Associations said that lakhs of farmers were depending on sugarcane crop and the same numbers of people were involved in the transportation of sugarcane, loading, unloading, jaggery production and transporting to market yards and shops in the district. The Government's recent decision would adversely affect the livelihood of thousands of people in the district," he observed. "Sugarcane is a second major crop after the ground nut in Chittoor district. At the same time the groundnut farmers are facing problems like the denial of remunerative price for their produce, the Government issued a GO imposing the restrictions against the black jaggary and also indirectly did a lot of injustice to sugarcane farmers as the jaggary is made of sugarcane," Jayaram Choudary said. "If the government does not withdraw the GO, farmers will intensify the agitation in the days to come and will not hesitate to storm the State Assembly in Hyderabad," he cautioned. District President of Groundnut and Jaggery Merchants Association Madhava Naidu, Federation of Farmers Association district leader K Babu and others spoke in the meeting.
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