Amid the rising tide of dairy farmers' protest in Maharashtra, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Wednesday decided to hold a meeting with opposition leaders and council over the same. The meeting is likely to take place in the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly on Thursday.
Earlier in the day, Fadnavis also announced a withdrawal of the cases filed against dairy farmers during the ongoing milk protest. However, the cases that were filed against those who are not farmers, but were charged for indulging in violence during the stir would not be withdrawn, the chief minister confirmed.
The development came after opposition leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil accused the government of not heeding to the demands of the farmers and urged the Centre to withdraw the cases filed against them.
"Tankers and vehicles have been torched at some places during the farmers' agitation...The government is not heeding to the demands of the farmers, but at least withdraw the cases filed against them. Section 151 (3) is slapped against dacoits, but here farmers are being booked under it. It should be withdrawn," Patil told PTI.
Responding to Patil's remark, Fadnavis said, "We are not opposed to a peaceful protest, but some people torched tankers. Farmers would never engage in such acts".
"Cases filed against farmers would be withdrawn. But cases filed against those who are not farmers, but still indulged in such violent acts would not be withdrawn," Fadnavis added.
Dairy farmers, led by Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana head MP Raju Shetti, have been holding protests in parts of Maharashtra seeking a hike of Rs 5 per litre in milk procurement prices. The protest began early Monday.