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Jan 11, 2018 03:08 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Small farmers are getting excluded in Punjab government’s loan waiver

According to the report, the ambitious debt waiver scheme launched by the Amarinder Singh government only focusses on marginal farmers with land less than 2.5 acres.

Moneycontrol News @moneycontrolcom

The Punjab government on Wednesday cleared 1.15 lakh cases of loan waiver of the small and marginal farmers of the state, amounting to nearly Rs. 580 crores. The government promised to disburse the complete amount before January 31. Many small farmers, however, are not being considered eligible for this loan waiver because their loan exceeds Rs 2 lakh.

An Indian Express report, taking the case study of a small farmer, Rachpal Singh, quotes him saying that after having submitted all his details, he was told by the officials that his loan of Rs 3 lakh taken from the primary agricultural cooperative society (PACS) cannot be waived completely.

According to the report, the ambitious debt waiver scheme launched by the Amarinder Singh government only focusses on marginal farmers with land less than 2.5 acres and makes them eligible for a blanket loan of Rs 2 lakhs only, even if their debt exceeds this limit.

“We initially prepared a list of small and marginal farmers having loan dues to our society. But then we received official instructions to first take the cases of only marginal farmers. For small farmers, we were to consider only those who had loans of Rs 2 lakhs and not a rupee above that. Therefore, a majority of our cases got rejected,” Dilbagh Singh, secretary of the Harsi Pind PACS in Hoshiarpur district of Punjab told The Indian Express.

Going by these numbers, the scheme will only be able to cover 3 lakh farmers as opposed to the chief minister’s original claim of 10.25 lakh farmers.
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