The Life of Labour: Farmers Begin 10-Day Strike Demanding Loan Waiver and Increased MSP

by Venkat T., Srividya Tadepalli & Thomas Manuel

The Wire | June 03, 2018

The Life of Labour: Farmers Begin 10-Day Strike Demanding Loan Waiver and Increased MSP

Illustration by Aliza Bakht

The Life of Labour, a compilation of important labour developments from around the world, will be delivered to your inbox every Sunday at 10 am. Click here to subscribe.

Four years after being regularised, 20,000 workers in Haryana lose their jobs after HC order

In the build-up to the 2014 state elections, the Bhupinder Singh Hooda-led Congress government passed an order regularising 20,000 government contract workers. The move has been declared illegal by the High Court which means that these 20,000 workers have effectively lost their jobs. The Congress government had utilised a method that was legally untenable. The court has given the state government six months to do fresh appointments via the regular process. The only bone that it has thrown to these workers is that the age criteria for the jobs will be relaxed for them – once. It’s interesting to note that despite being a Congress decision, the succeeding BJP government led by Manohar Lal Khattar defended the appointments in court, according to Hindustan Times.Read More »


Ten-Day Farmer Strike Begins; Food, Dairy Supplies May be Hit in North India

The Wire | June 01, 2018

Ten-Day Farmer Strike Begins; Food, Dairy Supplies May be Hit in North India

Farmers in Mandsaur, Madhya Pradesh, are demanding farm loan waivers and better prices for their produce. Credit: PTI

New Delhi: Farmers across north India began a ten-day strike on Friday (June 1), demanding higher minimum support price (MSP), assured income and complete loan waiver. As part of their protest, the farmers, will stop supplying vegetables, fruits and dairy products to cities in their region. The strike comes a year after the farmer protests of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra last year where six farmers in Mandsaur died in police firing.Read More »

India’s farmers lead the fight-back

Massive struggles over the last year have seen hundreds of thousands of cultivators wrest concessions from governments across the country

By Prasanth R.

The Dawn News | May 19, 2018



The year 2018 has been marked by massive agitations by farmers, students, Dalits, Adivasis, women and workers against the right-wing Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)- led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government’s regime and its policies. Resistance has been building up due to religion-based and caste violence orchestrated by the BJP’s ideological parent, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) that has demonized minorities and persons from backward castes. At the same time, the neoliberal policies implemented by the BJP-led government have led to the immiseration of large sections of the population, leading to the toiling masses of the country rising up in anger.Read More »

Pakistan: Teachers And Farmers Protests Brutally Crushed In Sindh

by | December 31, 2017


In recent weeks, as much of the Pakistani media remained fixated on the internecine squabbles of the country’s ruling elites, authorities in Sindh have been brutally cracking down on sections of workers and farmers in the province who’ve had the temerity to defend their rights and fight for improved living standards and working conditions.Read More »

India: Protesting Farmers Hold Their Parliament, Pass Bills As The Real One Looks Away

 by | November 21, 2017


More than 3 lakh suicides in three decades and millions of other lives ruined would qualify as a national disaster forcing the government to tackle it all guns blazing in any democracy.

Alas, it does not in the one that claims to be the largest of them all, the democracies. In fact it hardly gets registered even as a minor irritant barring the particularly bad months causing a spurt in farm suicides and thus making the phenomenon escape the confines of inside pages of the vernacular dailies and reach the “English”, national press. The months are all well marked: from April to July when many of Indian states face drought, December and January when occasional hailstorms destroy crops and with them the hopes.Read More »

India: ‘How Many Deaths Will It Take…?’

by Smarajit Jana

Frontier | Vol. 50, No.19, Nov 12 – 18, 2017

How many farmers’ suicide would make it a ‘case’? ‘The answer is not blowing in the wind’. More than three lakhs of farmers committed suicide since 1995. This is the registered cases of suicides as per the Government department. However as per definition, farmers are those who own farm land in his or her name even if one of the spouses or child of a farmer commit suicide having no land holdings in his or her name will not be figured in the statistics. So the actual number would be much higher if all these cases of suicides that are dependent on agriculture are included. On an average 15400 farmers committed suicides every year in India in between 1995 to 2003. This has increased to more than 16000 in between 2004 to 2012. Suicides rose by 42% in between 2014 and 2015. The number of suicides quadrupled in the state of Karnataka during this period. The rising trend of farmers’ suicides across India is a well established fact since it first reported in 1995, barring only few exceptional periods, still it is not a ‘chilling factor’ and none of these numbers has moved the policy makers, when the farming community is passing through deep to deeper crisis.Read More »

India: 40 farmers dead, 2000 hospitalised: Task force chief calls it ‘pesticide genocide’

by Vivek Deshpande

Indian Express | October 09, 2017

Kishor Tiwari, the chief of the Vasantrao Naik Sheti Swawlamban Mission, a state government task force set up for the welfare of farmers, has termed the deaths of farmers from pesticide inhalation in Vidarbha as “genocide committed by the state” and sought criminal action against the manufacturers as well as “corrupt government officials hand in glove with them”.

Addressing a press conference here Monday, Tiwari claimed more than 40 farmers had died and at least 2,000 more hospitalised from pesticide inhalation in Vidarbha and Marathwada.Read More »