Mumbai: Senior Shiv Sena leader Diwakar Raote on Tuesday appealed to Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan to seek resignation of Cooperatives Minister Harshwardhan Patil over the latter`s "failure to curb rising cases of farmers` suicides".
"Patil had assured in the legislature last year that the legislation against illegal moneylenders would be passed in the House in the monsoon session.
"However, that has not happened. The Centre has rejected the provisions made by the state to curb the malpractice which has resulted in deaths of several farmers," Raote said.
"Patil did not carry out his responsibility of stopping further suicides by farmers and hence should be asked to step down," he said.
"Over 10,000 farmers have committed suicides in the state in the last 12-13 years due to the policy paralysis of the state government," Raote said, in a letter to the chief minister today.
"The winter session is still three months away. I demand that the government issue an ordinance on the legislation against moneylenders in 15 days," Raote said.
The Sena leader`s demand came amid reports that the Maharashtra Money Lending (Regulation) Act, which was meant to stop exploitation of farmers at the hands of rogue moneylenders, has been sent back by the central government for the seventh time in August.
The Central government is understood to have asked the state to reconsider the Bill because it overlapped with several provisions of various central laws including the Reserve Bank of India Act, Companies Act and Banking Regulation Act.