Mumbai: In a move reminiscent of the farmer strike last year, dairy farmers in the state will distribute milk free of cost from May 3 to 9 to protest against the low price forced on them by dairies.
Farmers will distribute milk in chowks and leave their milk outside the offices of the district collectorate and taluka offices. “We will invite BJP MLAs, MPs and party representatives to drink milk. We want to tell them that instead of looting us, take our milk free of cost,” said Dhananjay Dhorde, one of the organisers of the protest.
The decision to hold the novel agitation was taken in a gram sabha at Lakhganga village in Aurangabad. Low milk prices were one of the key reasons for the strike last year, leading to the state government raising the procurement price of cow milk to Rs 27 per litre. Farmer groups say they receive barely Rs 15 to Rs 20 per litre from dairies and the government has not been able to enforce the procurement price.
“The cost we incur for each litre of milk produced is over Rs 30. We are getting just half this price from dairies. We want the government to enforce the procurement price set at Rs 27,” said Dhorde.
The state produces 132 lakh litres of milk daily. Only 1% of it is bought by the government, while 39% is bought by dairy cooperatives and 60% by the private sector.
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By: Priyanka Kakodkar
Source: The Times Of India