Mysuru: Two farmers take ill as police thwart attempt to besiege CM's residence

Mysuru: Two farmers take ill as police thwart attempt to besiege CM's residence

Two farmers took ill when police tried to stop hundreds of sugar cane growers from protesting in front of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah’s residence here on Thursday. The farmers were taken to KR Hospital and are stable now.

Naganna from Muddahalli and Ravi from Haadya, both villages in Mysuru district, were among hundreds of farmers who were stopped by the police from marching towards the chief minister’s residence.

The Karnataka State Sugar cane Growers’ Association had called for besieging the residences of the chief minister, Revenue Minister V Srinivas Prasad and Sugar Minister H S Mahadev Prasad in Mysuru.

Farmers of Mysuru and Chamarajanagar districts are angry as Bannari Amman Sugars Ltd had failed to pay them Rs 78 crore in arrears of fair and remunerative price (FRP) per tonne of sugar cane as agreed upon in January. Though the FRP was fixed at Rs 2,469 per tonne, farmers were paid just Rs 2,000.

When farmers arrived to protest, DCP (Law and Order) H T Shekar told them about prohibitory orders within a 200-metre radius of the residences of the three VIPs.

In no mood to move back, the farmers protested in the middle of Chaduranga Road off the chief minister’s residence. Some of them even tried to break the security cordon.

As police pushed them back, the two farmers collapsed in the melee. Fellow farmers rushed them towards a waiting ambulance.

K Rameshwarappa, Senior Deputy Director, Food and Civil Supplies, then arrived at the spot and conveyed to the farmers a message from minister Prasad that the arrears would be paid at the earliest. But farmers called it “hogwash”.

At a meeting later, Prasad directed the General Manager of Bannari Amman Sugars, Vedaswamy, to settle the arrears by March and pay each farmer Rs 469 on seniority basis in four instalments from February 16.

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