On the evening of 9th of June, 2013, Thamizhaga Vivsayigal Sangam (TamilNadu Peasants Union), Lok Raj Sangathan and Ulavar Periyakkam (Peasant Movement) conducted a Joint public meeting in Ottapidaram (Tuticorin, Tamil Nadu) where more than 23 peasants participated. The meeting was initiated by Chairman E. Sarvana Muthuvel who spoke about peasants rights and worker-peasant unity to strengthen the struggle against the increasing anti-peasant and anti-agricultural labourers policy in the country and specially in Tamil Nadu.
Sri. P. Karuppasamy spoke in the meeting about peasants unity and the need to build Peasants Sangams in every village. He also called upon peasants and agricultural labourers to join the LRS movement.
Sri. P. Rathinasamy of Ulavar Periyakkam from Moopilivetti village spoke about the importance of such a meeting and suggested that such meetings and discussions be held every month in the coming future.
The decisions of the meeting are as follows:
- All district collectors to withdraw the conditions about using top soil from the village reservoirs for agricultural purposes. Peasants demand to withdraw above said conditions.
- Huge drought relief efforts have been started in Tuticorin District. However, many peasants have not been included in relief fund list. For example in almost 15 to 25 villages, peasants in the Ottapidaram Taluk are unable to get the relief list prepared by the Agriculture and Revenue Department. The list is not correct and does not follow a Universal Distribution System.
The meeting demands that drought relief be provided to all affected peasants and agricultural labourers.
- For the past two years the agricultural yield from Tamil Nadu has been reducing. There has been a massive fall in farmgate prices at which peasants are forced to sell their agricultural produce. Therefore, peasants are unable to repay the crop loans. There is not enough power supply for the pump sets which causes more problems in crop production. The Government of India and Tamil Nadu State should declare an order to waive all crop loans.
The said demands will be included in a mass petition which will be submitted to the collector within 10 days. A demonstration will be conduct in front of Thasildar office at Ottapidaram in the second week of July.