Telangana demonstrations are sparked by falling cotton prices

Cotton growers in Telangana have planned to stage statewide protests in order to press their demand for $15,000 per quintal, which is lower than it was last year. In the State, cotton is farmed on over 50 lakh acres. Farmers continued to grow cotton in 2022, encouraged by the previous season’s record prices, which rose to 9,800. Farmers had resown the fiber crop despite heavy rains and floods devastating the crop in numerous areas of the State. “The second seeding increased production costs. In order to offset the greater investments, we anticipate higher prices, the farmer remarked.

The All­India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) has made the decision to stage statewide demonstrations beginning on January 4 in support of price increases. S Malla Reddy, a prominent AIKS leader, claimed that despite the high demand for cotton, prices had been maintained low on purpose.

The crop had been vegetated as a result of the prolonged periods of rain from July through September, which negatively impacted the development of bolls. “Output has drastically decreased as a result of this. Our estimates indicate a 50% decrease in output. Farmers reported yields of only 2­4 quintals an acre as opposed to 6­8 quintals, thus it should be about 20­25 lakh bales this year instead of 45 lakh bales last year, he said.

The protesting farmers are requesting that the State and Central governments guarantee a price of $15,000 per quintal, and Pradesh Congress Committee President Revanth Reddy has pledged his support to them. Different markets in the State have products priced between $6,800 and $7,500 per quintal.

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