Chandigarh: The Haryana Assembly on Tuesday welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi's announcement of "monthly pension of Rs 5,000 for farmers after they attain 60 years of age".
Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar promised relief measures for the peasants whose crops suffered damage due to recent unseasonal rains.
Khattar today informed the House that "Modi had yesterday during 'Shahidi Diwas' function in Hussainiwala (Punjab) announced to give monthly pension of Rs 5000 to farmers after they attain 60 years of age" and appealed to the members present to welcome this "pro-farmer" decision.
Later on, state BJP President Subhash Barala got up to speak and thanked the Prime Minister for making the announcement and appealed to other members to support it.
However, Congress MLA Karan Singh Dalal stated that the BJP government in Haryana was in "deep slumber" as the farmers had suffered huge losses due to recent spell of rains and hailstorm and it was only after the recent visit of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, who met the affected farmers in different parts of the state, that the magnitude of the problem was now being felt by the government.
Meanwhile, Khattar informed the House that he has requested PM Modi through a written communication today to provide immediate interim relief of Rs 500 crore to compensate the damage caused to Rabi crops of farmers due to recent unseasonal rains and hailstorms in the state.
He informed the house that the government has also decided to reschedule the payment of loans under which crop loans would be converted into medium term loans for a period of three years. Apart from this, the next crop loan would be provided to farmers on zero per cent interest rate, he said.
The government has also decided to give benefit to farmers in electricity bills. Under this, 50 per cent of the bills of previous six months and the next six months would be waived for the farmers who have lost up to 50 per cent of their crops.
Likewise, 100 per cent electricity bills of farmers would be waived off for one year whose crops have been damaged to the extent of more than 50 per cent, he said, adding 'special girdwari' (survey) will be completed in all districts by March 31 where crops stood damaged.