Cane growers in Muzaffarnagar facing double whammy
Meerut region of Western Uttar Pradesh is famous for its sugarcane production and Muzaffarnagar district is known in the Asian continent for its quality jaggery product. But due to failure of the State Government and administration to control the violence that erupted following the September 7 incident, and the subsequent loss of mutual trust, the cane growers of Muzaffarnagar are facing a double whammy. After the violence, their fields are being targeted by the anti-social elements.
In Muzaffarnagar, standing sugar cane crops are being burnt; the tube wells, which are the main source of irrigating the fields, are being broken, and electric motors are being stolen. Above all this are being subjected to false cases by police and administration for their alleged involvement in the violence. The farmers, who otherwise added to the food storage of the country, are now compelled to live in constant fear. The entire sugarcane belt is experiencing a kind of unrest with people getting more and more restive with each passing day. Though efforts are launched to take the stock of their loss at the political and social levels, they are yet to hear any consoling words. And one does not know how long they will have to suffer like this.
According to reports, standing sugarcane in the fields of around 50 farmers of Muzaffarnagar, Shamali, Saharanpur, and Meerut districts have been burnt leading to loss of lakhs of rupees. The miscreants had broken 17 tractors and thrown them in the canal for which the government had not given any compensation to the owners as yet. BJP National Executive Member and a prominent Jat leader Dr Veersen Saroha visited the affected farmers at the house of Chaudhary Baba Hari Kishan Malik at Lisadh villages on October 9. Dr Saroha was informed by Baba Hari Kishan Malik how the government had slapped 26 false cases on him and his two sons Rajendra Malik and Vijendra Malik in police stations. In Lisadh village alone 1200 people are implicated in such false cases by the police and the cops have turned their life into a hell. Police have detained nine innocent youth of village Fugana and Lak. Sugarcane in 10 bigha farm of Chaudhary Harbir Singh of Sulpa village in Shamli was burnt to ashes; another 90 bigha cane crop was reduced to ashes by miscreants at Khedi village in Sardhana area of Meerut district. According to former Cooperative Minister of UP Sudhir Baliyan, another sugar cane crop covering an area of 25 bighas belonging to Chandrabhan Sharma, son of Naresh, resident of Rasulpur Jatan in Shahpur was burnt; in another similar incident Chaudhary Rishipal of Ghanshyampura village under Ratnapuri police station met the same fate. The temple priest of Makhyali Chandpur in Nai Mandi Kotwali area was murdered by unknown criminals. According to Sudhir Baliyan the incidents of crop burning were rampant in regard to fields of Harijans, Jats, Dheevars, Pal, Kashyap, Rajputs and Brahmins of the area. No one is able to stop such incidents. Tube wells of many farmers were broken and electric motors were stolen. In such situation the season of extraction could not be started as yet. The poor and hapless farmers neither are safe nor are their crops secure in this belt of Western UP. Union Minister Ajit Singh merely completed the formality of visiting the area on October 8. He talked to them but simply refused to listen to their woes and advised them to come to Delhi and tell him whatever they wanted to share now. He advised the Jats to live in harmony with their Muslim brethren as they used to live before the violence broke out and maintain peace and unity at any cost.
Former member of UP Backward Commission and prominent Jat leader of BJP Jai Prakash Tomar assured to bear all the expenses of educating the children of two cousins – Gaurav and Sachin Malik- who were killed in the incident on August 27. He alleged that Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has failed to initiate steps to assure protection to the school-going girl students of the area and thus put a question mark on the education of girls in rural areas. He demanded immediate and strong measures to ensure proper atmosphere to allow girls to pursue their education failing which the BJP would take up this issue and launch a massive agitation.