Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Wednesday met the families of the farmers who were killed in police firing in Mandsaur last week. Section 144, which prohibits more than four people from gathering in a place, was revoked ahead of his visit to the troubled region, reported ANI.

Chouhan handed over a cheque of Rs 1 crore to the family of one of the deceased farmers, reported PTI. The Madhya Pradesh government had on Tuesday announced a compensation of Rs 1 crore each to the kin of five farmers killed in the firing. The aid was sanctioned from the CM’s discretionary fund and it would be given by the Mandsaur collector through e-payment facility.

Meanwhile, Bhupendra Singh, the home minister of Madhya Pradesh, said on Wednesday the farmer suicides in the state may have been caused owing to “personal reasons”, reported News 18. “If a farmer is committing suicide it is not necessary that he was into debt,” Singh said. “There can be various reasons for a farmer to commit suicide.”

The farmers in the state have been protesting since June 1. They want fair prices for their produce and loan waivers from the Bharatiya Janata Party government. Five farmers were killed in firing during a protest in Mandsaur on June 6, prompting the authorities to impose a curfew in the area. Section 144 was imposed soon after the curfew.

On Monday, the Madhya Pradesh government had appointed retired High Court judge JK Jain to initiate an inquiry into the death of five farmers killed during protests. The one-member committee was ordered to submit its findings within three months.

The politics in Mandsaur

Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia was arrested by the Madhya Pradesh police on Tuesday when he tried to visit the troubled district of Mandsaur. Scindia, Congress’ MP from Guna, and his supporters were earlier stopped at Dhodar by the police. His arrest came hours after Patidar movement leader Hardik Patel and his supporters were taken in by the Madhya Pradesh police when they were on their way to violence-hit Mandsaur. Earlier, Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi and an Aam Aadmi Party delegation were denied entry to the district.

On June 10, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, who had announced compensation for the victims’ families, also went on a “peace fast”. Chouhan had vowed to restore peace in the state with his fast. He had also assured the farmers of a profitable price for their produce.

“I slept intermittently and all that while I kept thinking about what all topics – out of the ones we discussed with the farmers – can be worked upon as soon as possible,” Chouhan told ANI on Sunday.

He called off his fast at Bhopal’s Dussehra Maidan on Sunday. “We will make the state land use advisory service so that farmers get correct and timely information about climate change,” he had said before breaking his fast. “I promise that along with BJP government and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, we will irrigate every land. We have decided to implement every policy with the consent of farmers.”