Farmers’ loan waiver scheme to continue till last person is benefited: Deshmukh

Nagpur : The Maharashtra Co-operation Minister Subhash Deshmukh on Wednesday assured the state Assembly that the ambitious farmers’ loan waiver scheme will continue in the state till its benefits are extended to last man (farmer).

Claiming the current scheme much more transparent and real beneficial for the farmers, Deshmukh said it was better designed than the previous loan waiver scheme of Congress-NCP regime in 2008.

Winding up two day marathon debate on agriculture crises and inadequate prices to the agro produce and loan waiver scheme moved by Opposition Leader Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil, the NCP group leader group leader Ajit Pawar, the senior Congress member Prithviraj Chavan, Jayant Patil and Dilip Walse-Patil and others, the minister in his lengthy reply virtually silenced the Opposition benches.

Pointing lacunae in the previously adopted loan waiver scheme, Deshmukh mincing no words criticized the Opposition, He said about 8.5 percent loan waiver was availed by wrong beneficiaries and the number of bogus persons not entitled for the benefits were to the tune of 6.2 lakhs.

Now the number of beneficiaries this season was amount 27 lakhs and total waiver was in the range of Rs 14,000 to 15,000 crores, he said. The current loan waiver scheme was an on line scheme and only eligible farmers were entitled to avail the benefit.

Deshmukh took a dig at Opposition benches, particularly the NCP group which controls the Cp-Operative banks for being huge defaulters. On procurement of Tur pulses, Deshmukh said due to bumper crop the government is finding difficulty in storage. He again hurled salvo on opposition saying during last 14 years, “You (Cong-NCP), built only three-lakh ware houses to stock the food grains while the BJP-SS government has built one lakh ware houses within a span of three years.

The Opposition was using Co-Operative network for its vote bank and the network was on the verge of collapse, Deshmukh asserted.

Earlier during the debate, Opposition Leader Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil and Ajit Pawar claimed that about 24.51 lakh quintals of Tur dal was yet to be sold in the market and demanded filing offences against Marketing Federation officials. They said the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Shetkari Samman Yojna (farmers loan waiver) scheme was meant for Rs 34,000 crores but in actual process only 15,000 crore have been waived off.

Over 17,000 farmers have ended lives during last three years and the Central government has rejected extending financial assistance for the scheme. They alleged that in Kharif crop season in year 2017.

about 92 percent of farmers whose insurance policy details matched with Bank details were, however, denied loan waiver benefits. Only Rs 947 crores were disbursed out of Rs 2269 crores, earmarked for disbursement by the Banks.