Cane farmers to revoke pact signed with government
KATHMANDU, DECEMBER 29
Sugarcane farmers have announced that they will revoke the agreement they had inked with the government after one of the farmers who had come to protest in Kathmandu died today.
Sixty-five-year-old Narayan Ray Yadav from Sarlahi, passed away this morning at Shahid Gangalal National Heart Centre due to a heart attack. According to Manish Mishra, one of the protestors from Sarlahi, Yadav was first taken to Helping Hands Community Hospital. “As soon as he felt an ache in his heart we took him to Helping Hands Hospital but he was referred to Shahid Gangalal. Two hours after he was admitted to Shahid Gangalal doctors declared him dead,” he said.
According to Mishra, Yadav has to recover around Rs 2.4 million from Annapurna Sugar Mills and has to pay around Rs 1.8 million to the bank. So far he has not received even a single rupee.
“He has to clear his bank loans, so he had been saying he would not return from Kathmandu this time without recovering his due payment,”
Mishra said, adding, “He was actually against the agreement we had signed with the government.”
Yadav was staying at Krishna Pranami Temple in Gothatar.
Mishra informed that the agreement will be revoked now and farmers will not move away from Kathmandu unless all their dues are cleared. “We have promised our families to return with money. We will now resume our protest,” he said. “Last year too we blindly trusted the government but it betrayed us. This time we will not return without taking our money,” he stated.
Sugarcane farmers had been protesting in Kathmandu for 16 days demanding the government to help them recover their payments before they signed the agreement with the government yesterday. Meanwhile, a few sugar mills have started clearing their dues.
The Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies had signed an agreement with leaders of the Sugarcane Farmers Struggle Committee yesterday. As per the pact, the farmers would halt their protest and they would receive all their payments within 21 days.
However, Mishra revealed that besides a few farmers others did not want to halt the protest. After Yadav passed away a meeting scheduled for today at the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development with sugarcane farmers has also been postponed. Both the Agriculture and the Industry ministries have not yet issued any statement on the incident. Meanwhile, Rakesh Mishra, coordinator of the struggle committee, could not be reached even after repeated attempts to contact him.