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Angry over getting Rs 1064 for 750 kg onion, farmer sends money to PM

Abha Toppo
Abha Toppo

In Maharashtra, an onion-farmer who had to sell his produce for little above Rs 1/kg has sent his earnings to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, as a mark of protest.

Sanjay Sathe, who hails from Nashik district, was one amongst few ‘progressive farmers’ chosen by the Union Agriculture Ministry to interact with then US President Barack Obama during his visit to India in 2010.

Talking to media the farmer told, "I produced 750 kg of onion in this season but was offered a rate of Rs 1/kg at Niphad wholesale market last week. But I managed to negotiate a deal for Rs 1.40/kg and earned Rs 1064 for 750 kg”.

He added that "It was painful to see such miserable returns on 4 months of hard work. Hence I have donated Rs 1064 to Disaster Relief Fund of the PMO as a protest. I had to pay extra Rs 54 for sending it by money order”. He clarified that he does not represent any political party but is angry due to government's apathy towards farmers’ miseries.

It is important to mention that Maharashtra’s Nashik district accounts for 50% of total onion production in India.

Regarding his meeting with the US President 8 years back, Sathe said, "I have been using a voice-based advisory service, which is run by a telecom operator for farmers for a long time. I used to call them and get information about weather changes, and thus succeeded in increasing my production”. He also told that he had been invited to speak about his experiments in agriculture on local radio stations of AIR. The agriculture ministry chose him to set up a stall at St Xavier's College in Mumbai during Obama’s visit and spoke to him for few minutes through an interpreter.

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