BKU-Charuni protests delay in fixing sugarcane prices in Haryana

: Hundreds of farmers and activists led by Bhartiya Kisan Union (Charuni) protested in different parts of Haryana on Monday against the state government’s delay in fixing the state approved price (SAP) for sugarcane for the current season even as crushing is underway.

The faction held the protest in front of sugar mills in Naraingarh, Shahabad, Yamunanagar, Karnal, Kaithal, Assandh and Panipat in the North Haryana region for two hours from 11 am to 1 pm and later submitted a memorandum to the mill administration.

The faction’s chief Gurnam Singh Charuni led the protest at Shahabad.

On Thursday, the Tikait faction of the BKU will also organise a similar agitation.

According to agriculture officials, the state has around 90,000 hectares under sugarcane this year and the production is expected to remain around 70 lakh MT, as the high-yielding varieties are under severe attack of the top-borer disease.

The farmers have alleged that the government was not concerned about them and not announcing the prices, even though crushing operations in all private and cooperative sugar mills started last month.

Charuni said that the neighbouring Punjab state has already fixed the sugracane SAP to 380 per quintal, but Haryana has failed to do so.

The farmer leader also warned that they will start an agitation in January, if the government fails to hike the sugarcane prices by fixing the SAP to 450 from current 362 per quintal.

In Yamunanagar, BKU-Charuni’s district president Sanju Gudiana said, “Sugarcane farmers in my area are anxious that they are not able to get the input cost of their produce that has also increased this time. They have to pay the costs and make arrangements for the next crop, but there is no relief.”

For the past several years, Haryana has been the highest paying state for sugarcane, but after a recent hike of 20 per quintal announced by Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann, the neighbouring state has now the highest SAP of 380 per quintal.