Maharashtra farmers' strike: Devendra Fadnavis announces 'biggest-ever' farm loan to placate protesters

Mumbai: Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday announced "the biggest-ever" farm loan waiver in the state even as farmers refused to end their agitation over a set of demands including debt write-off.

Fadnavis, in late evening, tweeted that the government has decided to appoint a committee to look into the modalities of the loan waiver scheme.

"We are working to fulfil Munde's dream of serving the poor. We have announced the biggest-ever loan waiver to give relief to distressed farmers," he tweeted. "We have decided to appoint a committee to prepare modalities of the loan waiver with representatives of farmers to ensure maximum coverage," Fadnavis said, while addressing a gathering at Gopinath-gad in Beed district after paying tribute to the late BJP leader Gopinath Munde on his death anniversary.

The BJP-led government is working hard to provide all possible assistance to farmers by creating irrigation facilities, ensuring power supply, facilitating food processing industry, group farming, etc., the Chief Minister said.

File image of Devendra Fadnavis. PTI

File image of Devendra Fadnavis. PTI

"Many more initiatives are being implemented. We have learnt a lot from Gopinath-ji. I got opportunity to work very closely with him," Fadnavis said.

The announcement of loan waiver by Fadnavis came after farmers' organisations continued their agitation in many parts of the state today claiming that their demands are yet to be met even after yesterday's late night meeting with the chief minister.

However, elsewhere in Beed district, Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Council Dhananjay Munde — Gopinath Munde's nephew who left BJP to join NCP some years ago — said the chief minister has not announced anything concrete for farmers.

Dhananjay also asked why "the government chose 'muhurat' of 31 October to implement the proposed loan waiver".

The State Commission for Agricultural Produce, set up two years ago, is still without members or chairperson, he said.

The NCP leader also demanded that those responsible for deaths of farmers during the recent protests be charged with murder.

Updated Date: Jun 03, 2017 21:47 PM

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