Maharashtra to reward farmers who regularly repay loans

July 26th, 2008 - 8:57 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, July 26 (IANS) The Maharashtra government will soon frame a policy to reward those farmers who regularly repay their loans, Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh said here Saturday. He assured the legislative assembly that the new policy would be unveiled within one month, providing relief in payment of interest on loans to those farmers who have been repaying their dues regularly to the banks.

Deshmukh’s statement came amid vociferous demands made by several legislators, who sought the inclusion of farmers who availed agriculture loans even prior to 1997 and all those who made regular payments of their loans, in the Rs.600 billion farm loan waiver scheme announced by the central government five months ago.

State Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Patangrao Kadam, while replying to a discussion on the issue initiated by Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) legislator Shashikant Shinde, said the government was “thinking” of making these inclusions in the farm loan waiver scheme.

The opposition parties, however, were dissatisfied with Kadam’s reply and wanted a concrete assurance from the government. It even urged the state government to adopt Tamil Nadu’s strategy which waived off farmland loans without awaiting instructions from the central government.

Following this, Deshmukh intervened in and gave the assurance to frame an appropriate policy within a month.

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