STOPPING short of the pre-poll promise of waiving farm loans entirely, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh Monday announced waiver of crop loans up to Rs 2 lakh for farmers with land holdings up to five acres and a flat Rs 2 lakh relief for other marginal farmers, irrespective of their loan amounts.
Making the announcement during the ongoing budget session of the Assembly, Amarinder said the state government had also decided to waive off outstanding crop loans of farmers who committed suicide. It has also decided to raise the ex-gratia for families of farmers who committed suicide to Rs 5 lakh from Rs 3 lakh, he said.
Leader of Opposition H S Phoolka, however, expressed dissatisfaction with the “limited measure”. “Crop loan is just a small part of the loan that a farmer takes. It also entails loan taken for purchase of tractors, farm implements etc. The promise made was for complete loan waiver and not just crop loan waiver,” he said.
Speaking in the Assembly, Phoolka slammed Congress legislators for expressing happiness over the move, saying that “they did not understand its implications”.