Maharashtra farmers launch agitation

Rahul Wadke Mumbai | Updated on January 09, 2018 Published on November 01, 2017

Shut down power feeders, lock out offices of Mahadiscom

The farmers’ organisations in Maharashtra began their agitation against the Devendra Fadnavis government by shutting down power feeders and locking out offices of the State government-controlled utility Mahadiscom on Wednesday.

The farmers’ organisations led by Shetakari Sangthana, at its core committee meeting on Tuesday, had decided to launch their State-wide agitation on November 10 demanding loan waiver for all the 89 lakh farmers and no coercive action against farmers who have not paid their power bills. However, the striking group advanced their agitation due to power cut by Mahadiscom

The leader of the Shetkari Sangathana, Raghunath Patil, told BusinessLine that the farmers have been irked by the action of Mahadiscom cutting power connections; therefore, they have decided to act today itself and shut down the local offices and feeders of Mahadiscom in Pune and Sangali, he said.

Mahadiscom which provides power to almost 95 per cent consumers in the State, has a debt of over ₹18,000 crore. Farmers are large consumers of power but they have not been paying their bills regularly. Due to a huge backlog, Mahadiscom has been forced to cut the connections of farmers in the last three months, resulting in massive discontent among the farming community.

Patil said that the situation is volatile and further course of action will be decided on November 10.

Senior Maharashtra government officials said that the issue was also raised at the weekly Cabinet meeting on Thursday. Keeping in mind the situation, the government has decided to delay the scheme by 15 days, which required farmers to pay their current bills immediately but past unpaid bills in instalments.

Published on November 01, 2017
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