KATHMANDU: Three associations of farmers have drawn the government’s attention and called for addressing the demands of farmers who have been active for a long time in favour of their interests and rights, and the agricultural revolution in Nepal.
All Nepal Peasants’ Federation (Revolutionary Centre), All Nepal Peasants’ Federation (Revolutionary) and Nepal Samajbadi Farmers’ Federation jointly issued a statement and demanded the government classify the farmers and provide them with identity cards, and provide various facilities, subsidies, relief, insurance, agricultural loans based on the classification.
The farmers’ association suggested that the farmers who are above 60 years should be provided pensions while all farmers should be provided with contribution-based social security allowance.
The joint statement said that foreign direct investment (FDI) should be prohibited in the primary production sector of agriculture. It said that Nepali agriculture should be prevented from being dependent on foreigners and broker capitalists, and demanded the order of the Supreme Court regarding FDI in agriculture be reviewed.
The farmers’ associations called for waiving off the debt of farmers who have already paid an amount equal to the principal.
The statement said cooperatives, microfinance institutions being operated contrary to the policy of Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) should be blacklisted and stringent action should be taken against them. They demanded the government take action against black marketeers.
Likewise, the federations of farmers demanded imposing a ban on the import of vegetables, eggs, poultry and livestock from abroad.
Similarly, the farmers’ organisations have urged the government not to increase the price of chemical fertilisers and called for making fertilisers available during cultivation. Organic farming and sustainable agriculture should be promoted so that farming could be done without chemical fertilisers in the next 10 years.
Farmers’ other demands include taking initiative in seed production and research to make the country self-sufficient in seeds.