Irrigation-related problems

Farmers demonstrate at Nohar subdivision office

On October 8, 2019, under the leadership of the Mazdoor Kisan Vyapari Sangharsh Samiti, farmers from the numerous villages in Nohar tehsil of Hanumangarh district in Rajasthan organized a demonstration against irrigation and water theft issues in front of the subdivision office. The farmers handed over a seven-point charter of demands to the tehsildar. They have warned the authorities that if their demands are not considered, then they will begin an indefinite hunger strike from November 1, 2019.

Farmers reached the subdivision office in large numbers. They raised spirited slogans and expressed their anger against the state government and administration. This was followed by a public meeting addressed by farmers’ representatives. The speakers included Madan Beniwal, President, Mazdoor Kisan Vyapari Sangharsh Samiti, Hanuman Prasad Sharma, Vice President, Lok Raj Sangathan, Om Sahu, ex-sarpanch and many farmer leaders of the Samiti.

The speakers pointed out that the government has itself admitted to many areas in the region having received heavy rainfall. It is also being reported that the dams and canals in the region have sufficient water. But in spite of all this, the farmers are desperate for irrigation water.

The farmers’ representatives said that the government and administration are exposing their anti-farmer intentions by not supplying adequate water for irrigation to farmers in the region in spite of sufficient availability. The farmers said that even though water is available, they are supplied water for irrigation only once in a month. There is no crop in the region which will survive with being watered only once in a month. Farmers can grow their crops only if they irrigate the fields on a fortnightly basis.

After the meeting, the farmers gave a memorandum to the tehsildar to the effect that – the allotted water should be provided to the Amar Singh branch, boundaries of distributors should be demarcated and the trees grown there should be removed, canals and miners should be repaired, the theft of water should be halted, the remaining outlets should be repaired as per the court orders, the lands nearby should be irrigated using a ditch miner and illegal constructions on canal embankment should be torn down. Farmers’ leaders warned the tehsildar that they would go on an indefinite hunger strike from November 1, 2019 if their demands were not speedily met.

Raghuveer Chinpa, Sikandar Arai, Juglal Khati, Rameshwar Kumhar, Razak Mohammad, Kumbharam Singhatiya, Kanhaiyalal Jain, Krishna Nokhwal, Mohan Nuhiya and Sumer Singh Rajput etc. were present at the event.