Thousands of farmers have come out in protest and reached Mumbai. The protesters plan to gherao Maharashtra State Assembly and press them to meet their demands. The Maharashtra government has set up a six-member committee to look into the demands. The farmers' demand includes a full waiver of loans and power dues and the implementation of the MS Swaminathan Committee report.
The farmers had covered about 180 km on foot for over five days and arrived from across the state to Mumbai and are gathered at Azad Maidan.
Typically a protest of this scale would disrupt traffic and cause a lot of issues to commuters. But the farmers won people’s hearts by reaching the Azad Maidan ground by 7 am this morning. They did not wish to inconvenience commuters during rush hours, especially students who are due to have their Board exams.
According to the farmers, the state has seen a rapid growth but they have been left out of it. The protesters also want tribal farmers to be allowed to own land. Besides loan waivers, they also want to be paid one and a half times the cost of their crops. The group is being led by a national farmer's organisation that is affiliated with the Communist Party of India (Marxist).
Several Mumbaikars were reportedly supporting the protesters with many handing out food items and drinks. A number of Bollywood celebrities too have come out in support.
I totally and whole heartedly support this for all farmers in this Nation. ....LETS MAKE THAT DIFFERENCE ..— Ranganathan Madhavan (@ActorMadhavan) March 11, 2018
Walking 180 km, 35,000 Farmers Reach Mumbai For Debt Waiver, Fair Payhttps://t.co/78CMhwdJeK
50,000 farmers walked 180kms, asking for the rightful compensation for their crop. On their last stretch they walked all night making sure they didn’t disturb the SSC board examinations. #Compassion #respect #Salute #JaiKisan - 🙏🏽🙏🏽 pic.twitter.com/epa0a90A6u— Riteish Deshmukh (@Riteishd) March 12, 2018
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.” #MartinLutherKing https://t.co/P7aMdXL2iC— Nandita Das (@nanditadas) March 12, 2018
As long as the farmers and soldiers are willing to die for us, RESPECT 🙏— Shirish Kunder (@ShirishKunder) March 12, 2018
The moment they protest against any injustice, POLITICAL AGENDA 😡
We love docile cows!#FarmersMarchToMumbai #FarmersMarch #KisanLongMarch #FarmersProtest #LongMarch #AzadMaidan
Massive respect!— atul kasbekar (@atulkasbekar) March 12, 2018
Farmers in the mammoth agitation agreed to walk across the city at night so as to not inconvenience citizens esp kids appearing for exams.👍🏽🙏🏽
Here’s a sea of humanity passing my bldg at 3:30am
Lesson for politicians who visit Mumbai n create havoc pic.twitter.com/KVr5XiNZTL
With blisters in the foot.. hunger in their eyes our farmers have walked seeking #fairplay #dignity ...this is the Truth because of your Lies and failed promises .. will you give them justice as they knock at your door... before they rise to knock you out #justasking pic.twitter.com/6lry7X0wz1— Prakash Raj (@prakashraaj) March 12, 2018