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Nov-05-2010 12:33printcommentsVideo

Vidarbha Farmers Stage Protest Ahead of Obama's Visit

Farm widows and distressed farmers from surrounding villages participated in the march and raised the slogan 'Barack Obama Go Back'.

Obama protest in India
Obama protest in India Courtesy: Press Trust Of India

(VIDARBHA, India) - US policies, starting with Clinton, have led to this. Obama is arriving in India with 200 business people, with groundwork already laid by Hillary Clinton to undo seed laws and biodiversity protection there, and with MoUs for putting US corporations onto  governmental agencies to control agriculture in India (Corporatising agriculture), would bring a massive intensification of those policies, based on GMOs and patents.

Obama wants tougher IPR laws. perhaps like the disturbing EU-Canada free trade agreement Canadian farmers are fighting. S 510 is designed to achieve the same biotech "restructuring" here. (see: Rajasthan opens farm gates: State ties up with Monsanto, other biotech giants to restructure agriculture.

P. Sainath: The Largest Wave of Suicides in History

Why Are Indian Farmers Committing Suicide and How Can We Stop This Tragedy? - voltairenet.org

News release on Vidarbha farmers from Press Trust Of India

Cotton growers in Vidarbha on Friday staged candle-light protests on the eve of US President Barack Obama's visit to the country, seeking to draw his attention to the plight of the agriculture sector in the region caused by American policies.

Protests were held under the banner of the Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti (VJAS), with the main protest being organised at Hiwara village in Zari taluka of Yavatmal district where a rally was taken out demanding a ban on American seed 'Bt Cotton' and withdrawal of ongoing subsidies given to American cotton growers.

Farm widows and distressed farmers from surrounding villages participated in the march and raised the slogan 'Barack Obama Go Back', the VJAS said in a release here.

"The US President is our guest and we respect him. There is no intention to hurt his feeling as we want that the main reason behind mass genocide of cotton farmers in Vidarbha should be there in the agriculture agenda as we understand it is not in the listed subjects," VJAS president Kishor Tiwari said during the rally at Hiwara, it said.

Vidarbha Farm Widows Association (VFWA) Babytai Bais lighted a candle in a prayer meeting in Hiwara, in which hundreds of farm widows and debt trapped farmers from the affected villages in Vidarbha attended, the release said.

Tiwari has alleged that American Cotton and Bt Cotton have ruined rural economy of cotton growing Vidarbha region as more than 10,000 cotton growers in Vidarbha, who opted for Bt cotton seed, committed suicide.

Nero's Guests - trailer  Movie on the suicides, asking about our callousness as a society that we are allowing this to happen.  

Special thanks to Hindustan Times

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