Chandigarh, June 29(Narinder Jagga) : Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh today, while giving assurance of issuing notification to bring the loan waiver decision soon, made it clear that those farmers whose debts have been waived, are immediately freed from debt repayment.Addressing a meeting with various farmers’ organizations here today, the Chief Minister assured that their government would continue their pressure on the Central Government to implement the recommendations of Swaminathan Commission. All the farmers’ organizations participating in the meeting adopted a harmonious approach to implementing Swaminathan Commission’s report to solve the problems of the farmers.It was also informed in the meeting that the verdict of the debt waiver will begin in two months.
All the organizations appealed to the state government to force the Union government to implement the Swaminathan Commission’s report without any delay. In response to which the Chief Minister assured them that this was highest on their agenda and They will do their best to remove the pain and suffering of the farmers.The Chief Minister gave assurance to the farmers’ organizations that their government would continue the discussion with the farmers representatives to resolve the problems faced by the farming community. Captain Amarinder Singh said that his government is fully committed to waive the debts of the farmers even though the state exchequer is burdened by a lot of debt over their estimate. He said that with the promise of making farming profitable, each of the 49 promises made in the party manifesto will be fulfilled.Responding to the worries expressed by the farmers about the hawkish loans, the Chief Minister said that the Cabinet Sub-Committee has already been constituted to discuss the problems of non-institutional credit issues.The Chief Minister reiterated that Punjab does not even have a single drop of extra water to give to any other state. He said that if the Sutlej-Yamuna Canal became a canal, then 10,000 acres of land in the southern part of Punjab would be damaged. He advocated for continuous dialogue to resolve this complex issue and said that Punjab would not allow water to other states and work was done by a committee headed by Finance Minister to resolve the issue.
Apart from loan waiver, besides farmers’ unions, the recommendation given by Swaminathan Commission in the report should fix the price of the crop (at least 50 per cent higher than the cost of production should be fixed), the farmers who committed suicide due to debt, compensation of Rs 10 lakh, including a job and waiving their entire debt, while the debts of these families are already announced beforehand. Farmers ‘organizations have also raised important demands such as preventing the acquisition of land without proper consent of farmers, cultivating land animals in the panchayat / shamlat land, proper management of stray animals and farmers’ consent. The Chief Minister assured them of taking all possible steps.In order to implement the Swaminathan Commission’s report, a resolution in the assembly and declaring Punjab to be a special agricultural zone was also seen in the meeting.BKU (Lakhowal) raised the issue of reducing prices of pesticides and Pagri Sambhal Jatta movement asked to fix the minimum price of sugarcane at Rs 375 and other issues related to sugarcane production. Apart from giving timely payment of sugarcane in time, the group also demanded Hoshiarpur and Gurdaspur to be declared cane zone because they are the main areas of supply of sugar to mills near the two areas.
As a result of the absence of appropriate marketing support, the organizations raised issues related to lowering their crop and protecting the interests of farmers and raised the demand for bringing down the potato, maize and Basmati crops under the minimum support price, so that farmers are ensure the beneficial price of their crop.B.KU (Sidhupur) raised the issue of direct transfer of purchase and to change transformers according to the need. B.KU (Mann) demanded pension for farmers over 60 years of age.The unions representatives have described this meeting as an important step to address issues related to agriculture in the state. He thanked the Chief Minister for initiating the debt of small and marginal farmers to start the loan. The issue of excessive loan from the banks was also raised during the meeting and the government was requested to ensure that this process was stopped.
In order to increase the income of farmers in the state’s crisis, a general consensus was reached on the consolidation of crop diversities as the cultivation of wheat and rice has not been suitable for the farm.During the meeting, a suggestion for opening of the Attari border for the export of vegetables was also discussed. This was the first meeting of its kind in which almost all the farmers’ organizations participated.
Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee President, Mr. Sunil Jakhar appealed to the state government to give GST to agriculture. And getting better returns from central government. They also suggested to raise the minimum support price (MSP) from the amount left to the Center due to the fall in import of oil. Mr. Jakhar asserted to make rules to control the loan by personal agents and moneylenders.
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