Monday, December 29, 2008

Distressed vidarbha farmers likely to be left out of relief package

Distressed vidarbha farmers likely to be left out of relief package

Nagpur-29th December 2008

With the Lok Sabha and assembly elections around the corner, the Maharashtra government is set to announce another farm loan waiver package to cover all those who were excluded by the central government’s waiver package and earlier Rs.5000 crore. relief pacakges aanounced by central and state govt. to stop on going farm suicides of distressed farmers of west vidarbha as these relief schemes were targeted to more than 1 million cotton farmers who are in debt trap & identified as in deep distress needs urgent help but as per reports it is most unlikely that these distressed farmers will be covered under new relief package as it is not targeted to give any benefit to these dying farmers because main demand to waive of crop loan up to Rs.50,000 irrespective of land holding of dry land farmers under agarain crisis of west vidarbha more over it has been designed to cover the prosperous farmers of west maharashtra as it happened in last Rs.71,000 crore loan waiver ,farm activist group Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti (VJAS)who lobbing for saving millions vidarbha cotton farmers alleged today.

The latest package is likely to cost between Rs 7,000 crore and Rs 10,000 crore, and benefit 2.7 million farmers mostly from the west maharashtra .The discussion on the Opposition sponsored debate on agriculture distress in the state began last week and Chief Minister Ashok Chavan is expected to reply to the discussion on 30th December . In the course of his reply, he is likely to announce the package, kishore tiwari of VJAS said.

The high number of farmer suicides from the six cotton growing districts of the Vidarbha region was one of the major reasons that compelled the central government to announce the loan waiver package. However, majority of the farmers from Vidarbha got no benefit from the package as it was given to farmers having less than 5 acres or 2 hectares of land.

Traditionally, Vidarbha has a higher number of landholdings compared with the Western Maharashtra or Konkan regions. Since Vidarbha’s farming is mostly dryland farming, landholding remained large even after the implementation of the Land Ceiling Act. According to the government’s own estimates, out of the 4.5 million farmers in Vidarbha, only 20 per cent received the benefit of farm loan waiver package,tiwari added.

‘we are asking food ,health and education security to distress farmers and rural employment support to all identified critical cases of west vidarbha but all packages failed to give them any relief and new relief packages is also set to keep these dying farm community out of relief net. We will move to high court against this bogus relief packages which are turning to be hoax and eyewash’ Kishor Tiwari informed today.

Kindly arrange to release this important news in your esteemed daily.

Thanking you,

Yours faithfully,

Santosh Netam,

Media Incharge

Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti

Nagpur.

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