UP: Farmers stage protest against installation of electric meters on tubewells, say BJP has betrayed them
The farmers ripped the meters installed at tubewells and brought them to Meerut from across 14 UP districts to protest the govt’s decision to charge farmers for the electricity they use for irrigation
The farmers ripped the meters installed at tubewells and brought them to Meerut from across 14 districts of Uttar Pradesh to protest the government’s decision to charge farmers for the electricity they use for irrigation.
They were also angry over the hike in power tariff.
The farmers are sitting at dharna outside the office of Pashimanchal Vidyut Vitaran Nigam Limited (PVVNL) in Meerut to protest against the Government decision and their number is increasing with every passing day.
As the news spread about farmers staging protests, many farmers removed the electric meters installed by the electric department at their tube wells and dumped them in the premises of PVVNL, saying that they will not pay the electricity bill.
BKU’s national president Naresh Tikait said that the state government had announced free electricity for irrigation but now was installing meters, which was unfair.
“This is the beginning. We will fill this vacant ground of the electricity department with the meters,” Tikait said adding that the farmers will not allow the installation of meters.
Kisan Panchayat under the aegis of Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) is being held at Urja Bhavan in Meerut. In that panchayat, farmers from surrounding districts have reached with their electric meters. They wanted to hand over the meters to the officials of the electricity department and when they refused to take them, the farmers dumped the meters at the compound of the office.
“Farmers cannot pay the electricity bill. Should we sell the land to pay the bill? We do not want expensive electricity from the government, so keep electricity as well as the meter with you,” the farmer leaders told the officials.
A farmer leader Dinesh Khera said that villages are already facing erratic power supply and the installation of meters would mean a manifold increase in electricity bills. “This has been made clear to the officials that no farmer will allow installation of the meter in their tubewells,” he told this reporter on Tuesday morning.
He said that this agitation is spreading fast and soon will engulf the whole of Uttar Pradesh. The government has already burnt its fingers with the farm laws and now it has come up with the idiotic decision to install meters at tubewells. “Who gives the Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath such suggestions,” he asked.
Farmers said that the government is not working in the interest of farmers. Meter on tubewells will not be tolerated under any circumstances.
“They promised free electricity to farmers in their ‘Sankalp Patra’, and now they are installing meters. We can’t afford a manifold increase in bills of tubewells,” he said.
Another farmers’ association Kisan Mazdoor Sangathan (KMS), led by Thakur Puran Singh has announced to convene a panchayat in PVVNL office premises on June 30. “We are giving you time till June 29 to roll back your decision, otherwise we will gherao the PVVNL office from June 30,” Singh announced in a statement.