Lok Sabha Elections 2024: How long will BJP give 'jumlas' of farm loan waiver: Congress jabs PM Modi

Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh posed questions for Prime Minister Narendra Modi ahead of his rally in Dhar.
Last Updated : 07 May 2024, 10:53 IST
Last Updated : 07 May 2024, 10:53 IST

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New Delhi: The Congress on Tuesday claimed that the BJP has not delivered on its promise of farm loan waiver in Madhya Pradesh and asked that for how long will the ruling party give such "jumlas".

Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh posed questions for Prime Minister Narendra Modi ahead of his rally in Dhar.

"How long will the BJP give jumlas of farm loan waiver? Why was the ‘Double Anyay’ Sarkar in MP distributing animal feed as rations? Why has MP failed to give Adivasis their rights under FRA? When will MP implement PESA in letter and spirit?" Ramesh said in a post on X.

Elaborating on what he said were "jumla details", Ramesh said that in 2008, during the assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh, Rajnath Singh, who has been BJP president and is currently the defence minister, distributed pamphlets promising Rs. 50,000 in loan waivers for MP’s farmers.

He said that 16 years later, the BJP has still not delivered on this promise.

"In fact, the Congress government in Madhya Pradesh that actually implemented loan waivers for 27 lakh farmers in 2018-19 was toppled through the misuse of money and institutional power," Ramesh said.

The Congress Nyay Patra has promised a loan waiver, and a Permanent Commission established to oversee implementation. Will PM Modi commit to the same? Will the BJP fulfil a ‘jumla’ that they have been throwing around for years, he said.

Ramesh further said that in 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Union Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution accused the BJP’s MP Government of distributing grain that was "unfit for human consumption" and "suitable for goat, horse, sheep, and cattle feed" as rations in the Adivasi-regions of Madhya Pradesh.

"With what face is PM Modi now seeking votes from MP’s Adivasi communities for his free rations scheme? Does the PM endorse this high-handed attitude of his party people?" he said.

Ramesh pointed out that in 2006, the Congress passed the revolutionary Forest Rights Act (FRA) which granted Adivasi and forest-dwelling communities legal rights to manage their own forests, and economically benefit from the forest produce they collect.

"The BJP government, however, has obstructed the implementation of the FRA, depriving millions of Adivasis of its benefits. Only 47% (2,94,877 claims) of the 6,27,513 individual claims filed have been granted, and land titles distributed cover only 10% (5,931 sq. km) of the 57,948 sq. km eligible for community rights. Why have consecutive BJP government in Madhya Pradesh failed to provide Adivasi communities their rights?" he said.

Ramesh further said that the BJP government in Madhya Pradesh notified the rules for PESA on 15th November 2022.

"PESA gives the right to the notified Gram Sabhas in tribal areas to decide on the rules and regulations regarding all natural resources in forest areas. However, the BJP government at the state and Centre has routinely violated PESA," he alleged.

The most recent examples emerge from the Basaniya-Odhari Dam in Mandla where 31 Adivasi villages are being evicted for the dam’s construction, Ramesh said.

"Similarly, Adivasis in Alirajpur have also mobilised against the Government’s exploration for minerals in their land without the consent of the Gram Sabhas. Can the PM commit to enforcing PESA in letter and spirit in Madhya Pradesh? Or will he turn a blind eye as his Government and party routinely violate the law?" he said and asked the prime minister to break his "silence" on such issued.

Earlier, Ramesh posed questions to Prime Minister Modi ahead of the latter's rally in Madhya Pradesh's Khargone.

"Why has the BJP failed to improve rail connectivity in MP's tribal districts? Why are Adivasis unwelcome in 'Modi ka Parivar'? Why does the Modi sarkar continue to neglect migrant workers?" Ramesh asked on X.

Elaborating on what he said were "jumla (rhetoric) details", the Congress leader said even after being in power for 10 years, the Modi government has "failed" to complete the Dahod-Indore and Chhota Udaipur-Dhar railway lines.

"These railway lines were sanctioned by the UPA government but ten years later, construction has not even begun. Better rail connectivity would bring prosperity to the relatively isolated tribal-dominated districts of Dhar and Jabhua in Madhya Pradesh but successive BJP governments in the state and at the Centre have neglected this project," he alleged.

Can the prime minister provide an explanation for the delay of more than 10 years in these crucial railway projects, he asked.

"Is it attributable to his general callousness towards the Adivasi community?" Ramesh asked.

He also alleged that the Modi government has not just "neglected MP's Adivasi communities, they have actively terrorised them".

"The BJP's allocation for Adivasis in the central budget has consistently fallen short of the 8.2 per cent target set by the NITI Aayog in 2017. Their poll promise to allocate Rs 3 lakh crore for tribal welfare in Madhya Pradesh remains unfulfilled," the former Union minister said.

"After the PM's rally in Jhabua, BJP workers were seen brutally beating an Adivasi youth in Betul. And last year, a disturbing video had gone viral that showed a BJP leader urinating on an Adivasi man in public," Ramesh said.

It is clear that there is no space for the Adivasi community in "Modi ka Parivar", he added.

Published 07 May 2024, 10:44 IST

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