Congress party has repeatedly criticized BJP for not taking care of farmers. It promised loan waivers in every electoral manifesto. But the fact is that no government has been able to implement farm loan waivers as transparently as the Yogi Government. The newly elected Congress governments in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Chhattisgarh could take a leaf out Yogi’s book on how to implement farm loan waivers.
The electoral manifesto of BJP in Uttar Pradesh promised farm loan waiver for small and marginal farmers. Yogi government announced waiver few days after assuming power and allotted 36,000 crores for this. The government allotted Rs 30,729 crores for waiver of loans up to 1 lakh and Rs 5,630 crores for NPAs in banking parlance. So far 44 lakh farmers in the state have been benefitted from the scheme. This is 66% of the number of beneficiaries projected by the banks. The government has spent Rs 24,600 crores on the scheme as of December, this is almost 68 percent of the total amount sanctioned for loan waiver. The scheme is not closed yet and many more farmers are expected to benefit from the scheme in upcoming months.
In the state of Karnataka, the coalition government of Congress and JD(S) announced 34,000 crore rupees in the budget for farm loan waivers. The alliance government put forward 11 conditions for a farmer to get the loan waiver. These 11 conditions were put to make the loan waiver more exclusionary as the state government does not have enough money to waive the loans of all farmers.
The conditions include, the farmer must pay the outstanding amount over 1 lakh including the compounding interest to be eligible for the loan waiver. If a person has filed an income tax return in any of last three fiscal years would not qualify for a loan waiver. The farmers who have taken gold loans will also not be eligible for the scheme. A family member of the farmer can’t receive the loan waiver if the loanee farmer dies. The farmers who either have received vehicle loan or fodder loan will not be eligible for the waiver. Those working in cooperative or government sectors with a monthly salary of 20,000 rupees will also not be eligible for the loan. This resulted in only 800 people benefitting from the scheme in the last four months. The same will happen in Madhya Pradesh as the government has put many riders to avail the benefits of the scheme.
Congress party is master in manipulation and putting tactful constraints in any scheme. So the party claims that it delivered on promises but in reality very few people benefits. Indira Gandhi called for ‘Gairbi hatao’ back in the early 1970s and even after four decades of this slogan, a large number of households in the country are still poor.
The party was successively elected by making huge promises but delivered on very few. So, the party promised housing for all, health for all, education for all but none of this was achieved. Now it is doing the same in states where assembly elections are to be held. The party promised farm loan waivers and unemployment benefits in every state but after getting elected it puts so many riders that very few people get tangible benefits from the scheme. If Congress governments in MP, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, and Karnataka want to implement the loan waiver efficiently they must learn a thing or two from the CM Yogi.