Odisha farmers threaten civil disobedience stir during election

Odisha Politics

Bhubaneswar: The Navnirman Krushak Sangathan (NKS), a body of farmers which has been spearheading a farmers’ movement demanding “price, prestige and pension” for long, on Wednesday decided to resort to civil disobedience stir from April 2 to April 22 opposing the elections.

A delegation of the Sangathan led by its convenor Akshaya Kumar met the State Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Surendra Kumar and submitted a memorandum seeking permission for holding awareness rallies against the election process at different places in the State from April 2 to 22 during the election period.

Lok Sabha and Assembly election will be held in the State in four phases starting April 11. It will end on April 29.

“We have been fighting for the cause of farmers since 2010. Lakhs of farmers have taken to the streets often, demanding price, prestige and pension. Despite this, both the Union and State Governments have not paid any heed to the demands,” reads the memorandum.

“Even we are being arrested and stopped when proceeding to press for our demands in front of the State Assembly. This violates our right to the Freedom of Expression as enshrined in the Article 19 of the Constitution. As elected representatives are depriving us of our right to freedom of expression, we have decided to oppose the election process and observe civil disobedience movement by organising awareness programmes at different places from April 2 to 22,” it further reads.

NKS convenor Akshaya Kumar said president “We hope that you will give permission and support us in protecting our democratic right of freedom of expression,” mentioned NKS president Akshay Kumar in a memorandum submitted to the CEO.

The Sangathan also presented its schedule of awareness programmes to be held at 42 places in 21 districts.

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