Mumbai: A day after former Union finance minister Yashwant Sinha, a senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader, was detained by the police in Akola while protesting over the issues of cotton and soya bean farmers, the Maharashtra government intervened.
Public works department minister Chandrakant Patil has finally agreed to talk with the 80-year-old leader, who continued his protest on Tuesday in Vidarbha, insisting that FIRs be lodged against bogus Bt cotton companies.
Mr Patil said he would speak to the CM regarding Mr Sinha’s protest. “I appeal to our senior leader to withdraw the protest as the state government is fulfilling the demands made by him,” Mr Patil told reporters.
The district administration, however, has adopted a tough stance and refused to cave in to all of Mr Sinha’s demands.
District collector Astik Pandey said the administration has accepted six of the leader’s seven demands and urged him to call off the agitation. The administration has pointed out that it would not be able to accept the seventh demand — purchase of all farm produce at minimum support price by the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India — as it comes under the jurisdiction of the Centre.