Dec 13 2012, 7:24am CST | by Luigi Lugmayr
Nagpur, Dec 13 — A farmers' group Thursday appealed to Maharashtra Governor K. Sankaranarayanan to urgently intervene to break the stalemate between the ruling and opposition parties to ensure proper functioning of the state legislature.
In a letter to the governor, the Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti (VJAS) expressed concern that both houses of the state legislature are rendered non-functional during the ongoing fortnight long winter session here, even as the region faces crises in the farming sector.
VJAS chief Kishore Tiwari said that instead of discussing serious issues like the agrarian crises, farmers' suicides, malnutrition in the tribal areas and other challenges, the first four days of the session have been "wasted in verbal fights, gheraos and adjournments over trivial matters".
"It is alleged that legislators are only enjoying parties in clubs and resorts, which is just rubbing salt on the dying people of Vidarbha. When rural (Vidarbha) is getting less than eight hours power supply, there is mega-lighting and celebrations in Nagpur city," Tiwari said in his letter to the governor.
A copy of the letter has also been sent to President Pranab Mukherjee.
Tiwari said that the basic purpose of making Nagpur the second capital of Maharashtra - with the winter session being held here - is defeated as the core issues concerning Vidarbha are not being discussed.
"But all parties are making a mockery of the problems faced by farmers. We demand that Vidarbha should be given separate statehood," Tiwari demanded.
He added that while the allegations of corruption in relief packages which are already being invstigated, are being raised to get media attention, the legislature is not taking up other major issues like food security, health and educational help to the victims of the agrarian crisis in the region, including more than five million cotton farmers.
The state legislature was adjourned for the fourth consecutive day Thursday without transacting any business as the opposition parties stuck to their demand for appointing a special investigating team (SIT) to probe the alleged irrigation department scam.
The session started here Monday, preceded by opposition boycott of Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan's customary session-eve tea party Sunday.
Barring the obituary references and some other mandatory issues, the houses have virtually remained non-functional with processions, walk-outs, disruptions and adjournments.
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