Gehlot writes to PM demanding waiver of outstanding farm loans

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Jaipur, Dec 29 (PTI) Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday demanding a waiver of the outstanding loans taken by farmers from nationalised and Bhoomi Vikas banks.

According to an RTI reply, the Modi government, in its first tenure, had waived loans amounting to Rs 7.95 lakh crore of industrialists, but had not done anything for farmers, Gehlot said in a statement.

After the formation of the Congress government in Rajasthan in 2018, the loans of 20.56 lakh people worth Rs 8,000 crore were waived in the state, he added.

'I had to write a letter again to the prime minister to remind him about waiving the loans of farmers as the PM, during a rally in Madhya Pradesh on December 18, said the farmers of Rajasthan were waiting for a loan waiver. It is not a reality. No farmer, who had taken a loan from a cooperative bank, is waiting for a waiver,' Gehlot said.

He said only those farmers, who had taken loans from nationalised and commercial banks that are under the Centre's purview, are waiting for a waiver.

The chief minister said the previous Congress-led UPA government at the Centre had waived loans worth Rs 72,000 crore of farmers taken from nationalised banks.

He alleged that BJP leaders are provoking farmers by misleading them while farmers are protesting against laws passed by the Centre for the last one month.

Gehlot said such a situation would not have arrived if the Centre had established a dialogue with the protesting farmers' organisations.

The BJP-led NDA government at the Centre had promised to double the income of farmers, but it seems to be a distant reality, he added. PTI AG RC