Growers set fire to Tobacco leaves in Ramanathapur

Growers set fire to Tobacco leaves in Ramanathapur

Farmers woes :

Growers set fire to Tobacco leaves in Ramanathapur

Protesting against sudden fall in the prices of tobacco, farmers boycotted auction process and set fire to the crop in the premises of the Tobacco Board, here on Tuesday.

Thousands of farmers from all over the district had assembled at market. They sat in dharna near the administrative office of the board and raised slogans against officials. They held board officials responsible for the sudden fall in the prices. They also entered into argument with Auctioning Superintendent A Shivarudraiah, Regional Marketing Manager Venugopal, ITC Manager Ramesh. The growers contended that the price of quality tobacco which was ` 130 per kg in the beginning of the season, has now fallen to ` 50 per kg. The board was buying tobacco at `  80 to `  90 per kg as against `  150. The purchase rate is around  `  50 per kg whereas the production cost is about `  150 per kg.

They stalled the auctioning process and also threatened not to give permission for the market to resume if the rates don’t increase. The growers also had a wordy duel with the police.

Remunerative price

Regional Manager, Tobacco Board, Venugopal has assured farmers that he would make honest efforts to ensure remunerative prices for tobacco. He would also talk to senior officials of the board to give prices depending upon the quality of the produce.

Sudden fall in the demand for tobacco in the international market has its effect on Indian market too. A similar situation is prevailing in markets of Andhra Pradesh also. It was not wise to blame them for the fall in the prices, said A Shivarudraiah, auctioning superintendent.

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