New Delhi, Nov 9 (IANS) Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel, who had announced a 'march' to Delhi next week to protest against the central government's paddy procurement rate, has postponed it citing security reasons.
The state unit of the Congress said that Section 144 has been imposed in many states in the wake of the Ayodhya verdict and therefore, the Chief Minister has postponed the agitation programme.
Earlier Baghel was scheduled to 'march' to Delhi on November 13 to protest against the Central government's "refusal" to buy paddy from his state at the rate paid by the state government to the farmers.
Baghel, along with his ministers, other Congress leaders, workers and farmers, was supposed to begin the journey towards Delhi on November 13 and reach the national capital by road on November 15, after passing through Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.
Enroute, he was scheduled to address roadside rallies to highlight the farmers' distress.
The bone of contention between the Chhattisgarh government and the Union government is the price of paddy. The state government is buying paddy at Rs 2,500 per quintal from farmers, but the Union government has said it will not give the incentive paid by the state.
The Union government wants to buy the paddy at the minimum support price (MSP) of Rs 1,815 per quintal, Congress leader Idris Gandhi has alleged. He heads the research department of the Chhattisgarh Congress.
The Congress party has alleged that former Chief Minister Raman Singh of the BJP is taking "revenge" on farmers for his defeat, and it was the reason for the Union government's unwillingness to pay the incentive as was done earlier during the BJP's rule in the state.