Agri Business

Apple farmers in Valley suffered untold damage: Rashtriya Kisan Mahasangh

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on November 26, 2019 Published on November 26, 2019

Despite promises made by former Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, state-owned NAFED has procured only a negligible quantity of apples from farmers in the Valley, which saw bumper production this year, said a delegation of farmer leaders who visited the Valley recently.

Malik had said NAFED would buy apples worth ₹5,500 crore from the farmers. The Finance Minister not only reiterated the same, but also claimed that the procurement was a success, said the three-member team led by Rashtriya Kisan Mahasangh (RKM) national president Shiv Kumar ‘Kakkaji’.

The team had visited around 25 villages in the Valley between November 21 and 25 and met thousands of farmers. “After taking stock of the ground situation, we find that all the claims of the government appear to be false,” the RKM leaders said in a statement on Tuesday.

Besides, the unseasonal snowfall that took place on November 7 resulted in the damage of 50 per cent of apple trees in the State, the team said, adding that no government official has visited the farmers even though more than 15 days have passed since the natural calamity. The farmers also told the delegation that NAFED was paying them a much lower rate than the local traders.

The RKM leaders said they will soon meet Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar to demand appropriate and immediate compensation for Kashmir farmers. If the government fails to do so, they would launch nationwide protests demanding justice for the farmers, the statement added.

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Published on November 26, 2019
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