The Maharashtra government on Monday made a budgetary provision of Rs 15,000 crore for the farm loan waiver scheme on the first day of the Winter Session of the state's legislative Assembly in Nagpur.
The government made this provision by tabling a proposal of supplementary demand for implementing the loan waiver scheme. The amount of 15,000 crore comes up to more than half of the total supplementary demand proposed, which is Rs 26,402 crore. Of these, a provision of Rs 1,000 crore each has been tabled from the social welfare and tribal development departments, for farmers belonging to Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.
In the Monsoon Session, the state government tabled a similar proposal for Rs 20,000 crore, which was accepted. The proposal which has been tabled on Monday is also likely to be accepted soon, sources say.
The farm loan waiver is expected to cost the state exchequer an amount of Rs 34,000 crore. The waiver—titled the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Shetkari Sanman Yojana—was announced by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on 24 June.
But although over five months have passed since the announcement, very few farmers in the state have actually received the benefits of the scheme. On 7 December, the state government announced that an amount of Rs 19,537 crore has been disbursed to banks.
While on 7 December, the government announced that 41 lakh out of 71.11 applications had been validated, only ten days earlier, the corresponding figure was a mere 69,832 applications.
However, the government has increasingly been facing criticism from Opposition parties over the issue. The Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) have repeatedly demanded that the government put the details of the loan waiver online. In a press conference on Sunday, Fadnavis said the government would do so soon.
The NCP organised a Halla Bol march from 1 to 10 December, during which it raised farmers' issues, the loan waiver being prominent among them.
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Updated Date: Dec 11, 2017 22:11 PM