West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday said the Centre must announce a farm loan waiver across the country and claimed that the farmers were in distress “due to demonetisation”. “When the farmers are agitating, GOI cannot be silent. This farmer distress is the effect of #DeMonetisation,” she wrote on Twitter. “An assurance was given by the ruling party and now they must fulfill their commitment without trying to pass the buck to the States (sic),” she said.
Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had stated on Monday that the Centre would not extend financial help to the states in waiving the farm loans and made it clear that the cost had to be borne by them.
The Centre’s stance assumes significance in the backdrop of the Maharashtra government announcing a farm loan waiver as violent protests were staged by the farmers in Madhya Pradesh recently demanding a loan waiver.