Cancellation Cabinet meeting delays farmers debt waiver.
With the cancellation Cabinet meeting, the issue of farmers’ debt waiver has been further delayed.
Sources disclosed that Punjab Cabinet meeting was cancelled after the Union government expressed its inability to bear the financial burden of Punjab government. The state government was to give nod for the farmers’ debt waiver in the meeting, it is learnt.Had the government issued the notification, it would have to grapple with the financial constraints in future thus solving no purpose of the debt waiver.
The government under the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) Act had sought exemption for taking credit beyond the limited, fixed under the Act, from the Union government.
Punjab has demanded an additional credit of Rs 1,00,000 crore whereas under the FRBM Act, a state could get credit of three per cent of its GSDP.Ironically, the erstwhile Akali government took monolithic credits after showing ‘fake’ high GSDP leaving all doors closed for its successor.
Struggling for additional credit, the state government has been looking at the Union government and has sought that the GSDP’s 3 per cent limit be increased to 3.5 per cent so that Punjab could be bailed out of the financial crisis, a senior functionary of the government disclosed.
The Modi government, however, is not convinced with Punjab’s demand as Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh are also facing the same situation.After Dr T Haque committee report, the government is ready with a notification regarding debt waiver for the farmers. If the state manages to get Rs 10,000 crore as additional credit from the Union government, then its would be possible to waive off all farm debts.
Punjab is also eyeing the first installment of money, from the Union government, in lieu of the GST to bail out the state from the crisis.
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