Mumbai: In a stinging rebuke, the Shiv Sena, an alliance partner of the ruling BJP, has termed Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu's remark that seeking a farm loan waiver has became a "fashion"of late, as "insulting and unfortunate".
Against the backdrop of protests by farmers in various states for waiving their agricultural debt, the urban development minister on Thursday, said that seeking a loan waiver has become a "fashion" these days, drawing flak.
"Did Naidu visit a fashion show before making the comments? Farmers are protesting across the country. They are not getting the rates for their produce. You are not giving them wages and that is why they are demanding a loan waiver", senior Sena leader and Transport Minister Diwakar Raote told reporters in Mumbai.
He said it is unfortunate that a senior leader like Naidu has made such comments.
"Maharashtra chief minister has taken a positive step by announcing a farm loan waiver. But Venkaiah Naidu has insulted that initiative with his comments", Raote said.
Speaking on the sidelines of an event here earlier in the day, Naidu said seeking a loan waiver has become a "fashion". He also said that a loan waiver is not the final solution and should be considered in extreme situations.
However, speaking to reporters in Delhi, Naidu clarified that he was referring to the "fashion of political parties" competing with each other to ask for debt relief.
So far, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh and Punjab have announced loan waiver for farmers.
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Updated Date: Jun 23, 2017 07:54:00 IST