Pune: Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana leader and Member of Parliament Raju Shetti, on Saturday, said if the government’s intention is honest about waiving farmers’ loans, it should change the effective date to June 30, 2017, instead of June 30, 2016, as announced on Saturday.
Shetti was speaking to Sakal Times from Patna on phone. He was scheduled to meet Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. Shetti recently met Sharad Yadav in Delhi. He is trying to build consensus among political leaders concerned about farmers’ issues.
Shetti has already met Yogendra Yadav, Rampal Jat and VM Singh. He, along with other leaders, has formed the All India Kisan Sangharsh Co-ordination Committee on the two-point agenda: loan waiver for farmers across India and implementation of the recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission’s report.
He said with this announcement, not more than 5 to 10 per cent farmers from Western Maharashtra will get relief. He said banks do not show these loans as NPAs (Non-Performing Assets), as it goes against the banks. Instead, they go on increasing the loan limit of the majority of farmers by debiting the interest from the total loan amount. So, technically most of the farmers do not fall into the NPA category.
He said in 2016, the State government had come up with a circular, whereby the farmers’ loans were restructured. This means their loan accounts were regularised. He said as per the government’s announcement on Saturday, whereby farmers, who were in bad debt on June 30, 2016, will only be eligible to get loan waiver of Rs 1.5 lakh.
He said the remaining farmers, who are repaying loans regularly, will be allotted Rs 25,000 per head as an incentive.
This itself shows very few number of farmers will get benefit from this loan waiver declaration.