The eastern leg of Kisan Mukti Yatra led by the All India Kisan Sangarsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC) kick started on Saturday from Bhangor in West Bengal. The yatra which started by paying tributes to the martyrs Mofizul Khan and Alamgir Mollah will cover the states of West Bengal, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Bihar. Mofizul Khan and Alamgir Mollah were killed by the police firing in a protest over the forcible land acquisition for a power grid in Bhangor on January 17, 2017.
Unfolding the issues of distressed farmers’ in Bengal, the Yatra demanded the liberation of farmers from debts. They also demanded that the Trinamool Congress (TMC) government should procure paddy at Rs 2,300 /quintal like under Kerala’s Left Democratic Front government.
The yatra which also campaigns against the anti-people and communal agendas of the BJP-Centre and Trinamool Congress in Bengal will culminate on November 5.
The second day of the yatra on Sunday witnessed massive participation from all sections of the society including peasants, agricultural workers, Adivasis and Dalits. Despite these sections, hundreds of representatives from Bengal Platform of 118 Mass Organisations too took part in the yatra.
Paying tributes to hundreds of martyrs in the Jhargram District killed by TMC-Maoist goons, Vijoo Krishnan, Joint Secretary of All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS), said that the struggle of the people of Jhargram under extreme repression is an inspiration for all. He criticized the corrupt TMC Government citing how the mythological figures Narada and Sarada in Bengal have become the synonyms for corruption. Demanding an investigation on the unprecedented increase in wealth of Abhishek Banerji, Vijoo said that Abhishek is competing with Jay Shah, son of Amit Shah.
The AIKS joint secretary also pointed out the negligence of TMC government in agrarian issues. When the Minimum Support Price for Paddy was Rs 1,550 /quintal, the farmers in Bengal were not getting even Rs.900 /quintal and there was no government procurement. In contrary to this, the Left Democratic Front Government in Kerala ensured Rs.2,300 /quintal for paddy, he added.
Food security was compromised and for the first time farmers in Bengal were forced to commit suicide as they are not getting proper price for paddy, jute, potato and other crops, he blasted at the misrule of TMC government.
Lambasting the Narendra Modi-led BJP Government, Dr Sunilam of National Alliance of People’s Movements said the ruling BJP-led government is the most anti-farmer Government ever in India and the Prime Minister has betrayed the farmers by making fake promises. Through the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana, thousands of crores have gone to private insurance companies while the farmers did not get compensated for their losses. He specifically pointed out the pro-corporate agendas of BJP-led Centre.
The BJP Government has allowed corporates to loot jal, jungle and zameen (water, forest, and land) as well as Mineral resources and encouraged the land grab said Sunilam, terming it as the Modani Model of loot. He also exposed the untold suffering imposed on the people in the name of demonetisation and GST while the corporates are being given huge concessions.
Chandrashekhar, the leader of All India Kisan Mazdoor Sabha, called upon people to unite against the communal forces and Neo-Liberal Economic policies of the government.
Earlier a massive meeting was held in Kolkata, which has seen the presence of Hannan Mollah (General Secretary of AIKS), V.M.Singh (Convener of AIKSCC), Raju Shetti (Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatan), Yogendra Yadav (Jai Kisan Andolan), Madan Ghosh ( Vice President of AIKS), Amal Haldar and Nripen Choudhary ( Joint Secretaries of AIKS) etc.
The on-going Yatra followed a series of Yatras in various parts of the country. This Yatra is scheduled to culminate with a mega rally (Kisan Sansad) at Ramlila Maidan in Delhi on November 20, 2017.