Chennai: Tamil Nadu is suffering from severe drought and pending cane arrears adding woes to distress farmers. With the mounting sugarcane dues, sugarcane farmers have intensified their protests against the state government and sugar mills in the state.
Members of Tamil Nadu Sugarcane Farmers’ Association staged an agitation at Anna Nagar on June 24 demanding the state govt to ensure payment of cane arrears.
According to the reports, Sugar mills in Madurai, Aruppukottai, Nilakottai and Dindigul owe sugarcane farmers Rs 19 crore.
State president of the Association, N. Palanichamy, warned of State-wide protest on July 18 if the arrears were not settled immediately.
The government had introduced various measures, including a soft loan scheme, hike in the minimum selling price of sugar and others to help sugar mills to clear mounting cane arrears. The drought-like situation for the past four to five years has affected the state a lot, and it has led to a fall in sugarcane production, which ultimately hampered the cane crushing activity and gave less sugar output, with mills unable to pay the farmers.