BADIN: A number of protesting cane growers and farmers were booked at the Tando Ghulam Haider police station on Sunday evening on the complaint of the management of a sugar mills near Matli for rioting and obstructing its employees from their routine work.

On behalf of the mill’s management, Ashfaq Ahmed Rajput lodged the FIR against 26 growers and farmers, who had held a demonstration outside the mill’s main gate on Friday in protest against non-payment of their dues that pertained to the procurement of cane over the last many years.

The complainant stated that the protesters vandalised the mill’s property and hindered its employees’ routine work during the demonstration. He named six suspects in the FIR and stated that they were accompanying 20 to 25 unknown protesters.

No arrests were made till Monday evening.

The nominated suspects, Babu Siddique, Mehmood Arain, Khalil Zaman Nizamani and Noor Ahmed, speaking to local reporters, rejected the allegation made in the FIR. They said the mill’s management implicated them in the “false” case in its attempt to silence them. They said cane growers and farmers owed millions of rupees to the mills which it was not ready to pay off even after many years.

Published in Dawn, January 28th, 2020

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