TN: 30th AIKS State Conference Pledges to Fight Anti-Farmer Policies
Hannan Mollah addressing the public meeting. Image courtesy: AIKS
The 30th state conference of the Tamil Nadu Vivasayigal Sangam was held between September 17 to 19 in Nagapattinam.
The conference delegates passed several resolutions to ensure farmers’ rights, improve agricultural infrastructure and for better procurement prices.
It demanded the government not to allow natural gas projects in Cauvery Delta districts, which extract underground natural gas such as methane, shale gas, hydrocarbons etc.
It noted that the insolence of the BJP government, which is building the Mekedatu Dam in Karnataka, should be stopped.
The public meeting on September 17 was addressed by All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) general secretary Hannan Mollah and president Dr Ashok Dhawale.
Conference procession at Nagapattinam. Image courtesy: AIKS
The conference elected a new state committee of 87 members. B Shanmugam was elected as its president, and Samy Natarajan as the general secretary.
WITHDRAW ELECTRICITY AMENDMENT BILL
The Tamil Nadu Kisan Sabha state conference resolved to unite and fight against the Union BJP government, which is taking away the right to electricity from the people.
The conference observed that while the state provides power concessions for agriculture and other consumers, the union government is creating opportunities for private companies in power generation through legislative amendments.
At present, Tamil Nadu is providing 21 lakh agricultural power connections, which are vital for the state’s agricultural production. The government also gives 11 lakh free connections for those living in huts and up to 100 units for domestic consumption and power concession for handloom and small industries.
The resolution against the Electricity Amendment Bill noted that the bill is profit-driven, and if passed, the big capitalists will repeal all existing concessions and indiscriminately raise electricity prices.
ON FARMERS’ RIGHTS
The conference noted that the Madras High Court’s ban on cattle grazing is against the Forest Rights Act 2006, and this has to be invalidated. It resolved to intervene to protect grazing rights.
AIKS leaders at the Keezhvenmani memorial near Nagapattinam. Image courtesy: AIKS
Moreover, the Forest Rights Act 2006 should be speedily implemented, and land title deeds should be issued, passed by the delegation.
As per Section 34 of the Trust Act, house-site pattas should be granted to those who have been residing in temples, monasteries and trust premises for generations, and cultivators resolved the conference.
The conference also urged the Tamil Nadu government to release the report of the CB-CID inquiry set up to investigate the irregularities in the Prime Minister’s Kisan Yojana Financial Assistance Scheme.
PROCUREMENT AND PRICE
The AIKS state conference observed that milk producers should be given higher purchase prices for procured milk.
The government should directly purchase coconuts from the coconut farmers who have been severely affected by the fall in the price of coconuts, noted the conference.
It also declared that the state government should provide Rs 5,000 for every ton of sugarcane procured.
Additionally, the delegates demanded the state government modernise and rehabilitate cooperative sugar mills in Tamil Nadu.
The 30th AIKS Tamil Nadu conference resolved to push the state to abandon the Salem-Chennai eight-lane corridor project.
A resolution was passed to work towards the immediate implementation of the Cauvery, Vaigai and Gundar river connection project.
The members urged to abandon high power towers in agricultural lands and lay cables along roads. Wherever implemented, they want additional compensation as per Land Acquisition Act 2003.
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