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Dr Kamal: Govt not taking responsibility for farmers

  • Published at 01:39 pm May 22nd, 2019
Gono Forum President Dr Kamal Hossain speaking May 22
File photo: Gono Forum President Dr Kamal Hossain speaking at a press conference on May 22, 2019 Dhaka Tribune

Farmers across Bangladesh are protesting, demanding  a fair price for paddy

Gono Forum President Dr Kamal Hossain has said the government is not taking responsibility for the plight of farmers in Bangladesh.

He stated this at a press conference held at the National Press Club in Dhaka on Wednesday morning.

“The government does not have a proper policy for agriculture; the current problematic situation in this sector is a result of this. Farmers are the ones paying for their [government’s] shortcomings.”

The Gono Forum president also said the government talks about supporting the farmers when the seeds are being sowed, but does not fulfil their obligations when the harvest season arrives.

“It is clear that the government does not feel responsible,” he said.

Also Read- Parliamentary body to govt: Buy more paddy, stop import of rice

The party’s General Secretary Dr Reza Kibria, Executive Presidents Prof Abu Sayeed and Advocate Subrata Chowdhury—among others—were present at the event.

Over the past three weeks, a bountiful harvest has been overshadowed by the grief of rice farmers throughout Bangladesh.

Protests have erupted in villages, towns, districts, and Dhaka as well. In some areas, a standout form of protest has been to set a rice field on fire in order to send a very clear message: selling at current prices is the worst option.

Farmers are demanding purchases be made directly from farms, and that crops be sold at a fair price.

Currently, paddy is sold wholesale at Tk450 to Tk500 for every maund (1 maund=40kg). Many farmers have said the cost of harvesting each maund of paddy is between Tk1,000 toTk1,500. Other reports say that farmers will suffer a loss of at least Tk300 per maund if they sell paddy at the current market price.