Bengal CM to Miss Niti Aayog Meet, Urges Talk on Farm Loan Waivers

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, in a letter written to her Madhya Pradesh counterpart Shivraj Singh Chouhan expressed her inability to attend Niti Aayog sub-group of chief ministers for coordination of policy approaches and Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) which is scheduled to be held in Delhi on Thursday, 12 July, reported PTI.

Madhya Pradesh chief minister is the convener of the chief minister’s sub-group constituted by the central government.

Banerjee said that notice of the meeting reached her late due to which she won’t be able to attend the meeting. However she mentioned her suggestions in the letter to Chouhan.

"Institutional loans of farmers, especially small and marginal farmers, need to be waived and adequate budgetary provision for the same has to be made by the Union Government." - Mamata Banerjee

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“All attempts have to be made to increase the income of the farmers substantially within the shortest possible time and for this purpose all the programmes of the Government have to be converged on farmers’ welfare,” Banerjee suggested.

She also stressed on the need to increase the 100 days work under MGNREGS to another 100 days for “better convergence of agriculture and horticulture sectors for enhancements of farmers' income and livelihood”.

The Trinamool Congress supremo suggested that a Minimum Support Price (MSP) for procurement of major crops of different states must be declared and an institutional mechanism may be put in place to ensure that the farmers get the MSP.

Also Read: MSP for Paddy Has Seen Steeper Hikes Before

“All the farmers including landless farmers/ labourers, engaged in farming need to be covered under Kisan Credit Cards and average loan given to each Kisan Credit Card holder should start from Rs two lakh,” her suggestions read.

Citing example of the Bengal's government's Jal Dharo Jal Bharo scheme, she stated that schemes for recharging ground water should be taken up as priority through convergence with the schemes for water harvesting and “MGNREGS funds should be used along with other departmental funds for this purpose.”

She also suggested on the necessity of providing subsidy on exports of farmers' produce.

(With inputs from PTI)

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