Chandigarh: As per media reports Capt Amarinder Singh government today announced a waiver of crop loans up to Rs 2 lakh for small farmers (up to 5 acres) and a flat Rs 2 lakh relief for all other marginal farmer.
As per The Tribune making the announcement in the Punjab Assembly, the CM said the move would benefit 10.25 lakh farmers of the state’s 18.5 lakh farming families, including 8.75 lakh farmers with land-holding up to 5 acres. “The initiative would provide double the relief announced by Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra,” Capt Amarinder pointed out.
To provide relief to the families of farmers who had committed suicide, the Chief Minister said the government had decided to take over their outstanding crop loan from institutional sources and to raise ex gratia from Rs 3 lakh to Rs 5 lakh.
The decision is based on the interim report of an expert group, headed by eminent economist Dr T Haque, which was tasked with suggesting ways and means to help the state’s distressed farming community.
In case of loans raised from non-institutional sources, the government has decided to review the Punjab Settlement of Agriculture Indebtedness Act to provide relief through debt reconciliation and settlement mutually acceptable to the lender and the borrower.
The CM asked the Speaker to set up a five-member committee to visit families of suicide victims, ascertain the reasons for the suicides and suggest steps to prevent these. He told the Assembly that his government had already decided to repeal Section 67-A of the Punjab Cooperative Societies Act, 1961, to end auction (kurki) of farmers’ land.