A major rally is expected to be held by farmers from five provinces in northern Thailand to urge the caretaker government to pay for their rice under the rice- pledging scheme and to demand their resignation. As many as 2,000 farmers from Phichit, Nakhon Sawan, Sukhothai, Kamphaengphet and Phitsanulok would join the protest. Time and venue of the protest are not yet fixed, Prakasit Cheamchamras, a core leader of northern farmers, was quoted by the Bangkok Post as saying Thursday. A group of farmers has filed a petition to the king to ask for help over the government's overdue payments. In a move to appease the angry farmers, the Thai caretaker government on Wednesday opened an auction for over 467,000 tons of rice from the 2011-2013 harvests, drawing 18 bidders. The government would get some 10 billion baht (312.6 million U. S. dollars) from the auction to pay farmers. The commerce ministry also planned to sell another 500,000 tons of rice next week.