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Farmers begin Five-Day Protest outside Banks in Punjab

Abha Toppo
Abha Toppo

A number of farmers across Punjab have started five-day protest in front of banks in around 12 districts yesterday (1st January).

Sukhdev Singh Kokri Kalan, General Secretary, Bhartiya Kisan Union (Ugrahan) said the protest would continue for five days in Punjab.

Farmers held protest demonstration in front of SBI branches at Patiala, Sangrur, Barnala and Machhiwara (Ludhiana) while in Muktsar,  Bathinda, Ferozepur, Jalalabad and Faridkot farmers agitated in front Agricultural Development Bank. In Moga and Kala Aghana of Gurdaspur farmers protested in front of Punjab and Sind Bank. The farmers were demanding return of blank cheques taken by banks as well as arthiyas while providing them loans.

Activists of BKU Ugrahan said both SAD-BJP and Congress took undue advantage of the farmers during election campaigns and backed off from their promises. The activists told that while Congress government announced complete loan waiver before elections, now the arthiyas and banks are unlawfully taking blank cheques from growers and blackmailing them. Farmers demand that blank cheques taken by banks should be returned without any further delay as it can be misused.

Kokri Kalan, farmer from Moga district said banks were still going to police and getting farmers booked if they fail to repay loans. He alleged “What type of loan waiver is this by Captain Amarinder Singh that poor farmers are being booked and forced to give blank cheques. This will only increase farmer suicides as banks are also not refraining from auctioning the land of farmers”.

Additionally farmers are also demanding to raise compensation for the families or relatives of farmer suicides to Rs 10 lakh and MSP for all vegetables and fruits to take out farmers from wheat-paddy cycle.

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