NorthEast farmers face dire economic future - Adaikalanathan

[TamilNet, Friday, 12 December 2003, 12:13 GMT]
"Farmers in NorthEast have been facing severe hardship for the past several years. Many have to pawn their belongings now to continue to be able to cultivate their lands and earn a living," said Leader of Tamil Eelam Liberation Organization (TELO) and MP Selvam Adaikalanathan during a parliamentary debate on allocation of funds for the Ministry of Agriculture and livestock, sources in Colombo said.

"Many who abandoned their fields during the years of war have now returned to farming after the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between the LTTE and Government of Sri Lanka. But they are unable to sell their produce at reasonable prices and face increasingly dire economic future," said Adaikalanathan.

The TELO MP pointed out that although the Sri Lanka Government made promises to buy paddy from the farmers at Rs13.50 a kilo, the farmers are getting far below this amount for their produce.

The increase in the cost of materials used for farming has compounded farmers' difficulties, Adaikalanathan added.

The MP urged the Agriculture Ministry to take the necessary steps to help the NorthEast farmers.

 

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