Mumbai: The sugarcane agitation for better rates is all set to intensify from Sunday. The Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana (SSS) has called for a ‘Chakka Jam’ from Sunday in four districts of western Maharashtra. The SSS is demanding Fair and Remunerative Price (FRP) plus Rs 200 for the farmers. Sugar mill directors will meet on Saturday to decide their stand on the issue.
SSS chief and Member of Parliament Raju Shetti has demanded that farmers get FRP plus Rs 200 as rate. He has also asked for a one time payment. “Last year, mills failed to given FRPs in some cases. So, there should be clear ass-urance of it from the state government. Otherwise, our workers will agitate from Sunday. There will be protests in Kolhapur, Sangli, Solapur and Satara district,” he said.
Meanwhile, revenue mi-nister Chandrakant Patil claimed that the agitation will not have any impact on large scale. He also said that the state does not intervene in rate issues.
SSS spokesperson Yoge-sh Pande countered this strongly saying, “If state government don’t interfere, then why did the chief minister address the sugarcane conference in Mumbai?”
Meanwhile, anticipating violence, sugar mill directors had kept mills closed till now but will not be able to afford it much longer as the labour force for cutting cane has rea-ched almost all mill areas. Hence, they will meet in Pune on Saturday to decide their stand.