However, loans of small and marginal farmers have been written off with immediate effect and they shall be entitled to get fresh agricultural loans from Monday, he said. And no sooner than Union finance minister Arun Jaitley ruled out the possibility of providing any financial assistance to enable the state government to waive the loans of the order of about Rs 36,000 crore than Yogi found himself worrying. However, there will be restrictions in the case of such farmers who pay income tax and who are not dependent on agriculture for their livelihood.
Patil, who heads a group of ministers empowered to talk to farmers, made the announcement after a three-hour discussion with around 35 representatives of farmers' organizations and lobbies. At the start of the meeting, farmers gave a list of their demands to the ministers.
MP Raju Shetti, the leader of Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghtana, said if the Government fails to fulfil its commitments, they would restart their agitation from July 25. The most vulnerable would be states in which elections are nearing, " said Ind-Ra. "Those who are politicising it can not do good to either the country or farmers", Singh tweeted.
From June 1, over half a million farmers across Maharashtra, barring coastal Konkan, went on an unprecedented strike, marred by several violent incidents. The Nashik-based farmer groups continued their strike and later formed the steering committee. According to Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, the government is planning the biggest loan waiver in history.
That offer had been rejected by farmers, who had demanded a waiver of all loans, similar to the $5.6 billion in debt forgiveness announced by Uttar Pradesh in April. There are around 7 million farmers who have taken crop loans or short-term credit from co-operative and commercial banks.
Farmers in Madhya Pradesh are demanding better prices for their produce and also a waiver on loan repayments.
"When you are writing off loans of corporates, how can farmers remain quiet", Sharma asked.
The government said the issue of "betterment" of the farmers will remain a top priority.
"Lease holders who cultivate others' land can not avail of debt waivers, and they will continue to suffer until the government tackles reform of the farm economy", he said.
Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh on Thursday termed the agitation in Madhya Pradesh as "unfortunate".
The government has also said that it will also increase the milk prices, which was one of the demands of the farmers.
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