Farmers ramp up pressure on govt to pay for their rice

national January 26, 2014 00:00

By The Sunday Nation

Rice farmers from Phetchaburi, Ratchaburi, Kanchanaburi, Samut Songkhram and Prachuap Khiri Khan took part in another blockade protest at the Wang Manao intersection on Rama II road in Ratchaburi's Pak Tho district yesterday.

The group, led by Western Region community rice centre president Ravee Rungreung, called for the Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives (BAAC) to let farmers borrow 80 per cent of the pledged price, with their certificates placed as collateral. They also urged that interest from the loans should be low. The protest dissolved in the evening after negociation with provincial govonor.
On Friday, farmers also blocked a road in Bo Kradan sub-district, Pak Tho causing long tailbacks, before protesters dispersed. 
Meanwhile, 4,000 farmers from Uthai Thani, Nakhon Sawan, Chai Nat, Kamphaeng Phet, and Sing Buri, blocked the Asia Highway in Tha Nam Oi sub-district of Nakhon Sawan’s Payuha Khiri district yesterday. They called on the government to pay them for rice pledged under the scheme, after months of delay. As of press time, no negotiations with the government had taken place. 
Motorists are advised to use alternative routes. 

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