Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, urging him to consider a national-level farm loan waiver scheme. According to reports, the Punjab Chief Minister has told the Prime Minister that the move would result in a one-time solution for the woes of farmers.
Notably, the Congress leader had in January said that the farm loan waiver announced by his government was not enough to end the sufferings of the farmers.
In his letter to Prime Minister Modi, Singh pointed that his government had provided a waiver of Rs 2 lakh to all farmers who had sought institutional loans and up to Rs 2 lakh to other small farmers. He further said that while more than 5 lakh farmers had already been provided waiver to the tune of Rs 4468 crore, those remaining would get the benefit in near future.
In January, the Punjab chief minister had targeted Prime Minister Modi-led NDA government at the Centre, accusing it of “failing to come to the rescue of farmers”. He had also warned that if the Centre failed to take any step, there would be no end to farmer suicides in Punjab.
According to Singh, the Congress government in Punjab had inherited a debt of Rs 2.08 lakh crore and the farm loan waiver was “the best” that he could have done in the given situation. The Punjab Chief Minister had also questioned the central government over non-implementation of Swaminathan Commission report.
Apart from the request for a national-level farm loan waiver, Singh has also asked the Prime Minister to direct the Union Agriculture Ministry to modify the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana. According to the Congress leader, the changes in the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana must be aimed at using pro-farmer initiatives to effectively transform the rural economy.