Mysore, Apr 16 UNI | 4 months ago

A section of farmers in Mysore region has decided to exercise the 'None of the above' (NOTA) option in the April 17 Lok Sabha polls.

Even though Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha (Puttanaiah faction) declared its support to Congress in a few constituencies of the state including Mysore and Mandya, there is widespread dissent among farmers in the region, who take their own decision to use NOTA during the elections.

N Nanjegowda, advocate and member of the sangha, said that over 300 peasants from Mysore, Mandya and Chamarajanagar districts met here and decided to opt for NOTA option.

It was also decided that the message will be spread to all members of the organisation and other farmers as it is unthinkable of the sangha supporting the Congress, the BJP or the Janata Dal (Secular) as they follow anti-farmer policies, he said.

'Some sangha leaders have forgotten the genesis and evolution of KRRS since the 1980s, following the death of ryots at Navalgund and the Nargund police firing incident.

'It is unfortunate that in their quest for power, they have diluted the ideology of farmers' organisations and sold themselves to the Congress,' Mr Nanjegowda, who had also led a crusade against illegal sand extraction in Mysore district, said.

The M S Swaminathan Committee report, seeking fixation of agricultural produce purchase price on the basis of 'cost of production plus 50 per cent over it' to ensure a decent income to farmers, has not been implemented by the Congress, which is playing with the lives of farmers, Mr Nanje Gowda said.

The lawyer said Congress came to power in the state in May last year with a promise that an agricultural price commission would be constituted, but it had not yet been done and urged for the same immediately.

'A section of farmers has not taken kindly to the KRRS' decision to withdraw its candidate, Nandini Jayaram, who had filed her nominations as a Sarvodaya Paksha candidate during the by-election to the Mandya Lok Sabha seat six months ago,' Mr Nanjegowda said.

He added that KRRS had backed Congress then also and there is a growing perception among farmers that the sangha has been sold out to Congress, and may soon lose its identity.

The peasants rued the fact that the organisation had overlooked the suicide of nearly two lakh farmers across the country in the last 10 years and was extending support to Congress.

Similarly, they had decided not to support BJP and described both the parties as funded by corporate houses and alleged that the parties were being indirectly controlled by them.

(Posted on 16-04-2014)