New MVA govt announces loan waiver of upto Rs 2 lakh

AFP file photo

In its first major decision, the new Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra on Saturday announced a comprehensive loan waiver scheme for farmers.

Loans up to Rs 2 lakh would be waived off with a cut off date of 30 September 2019.

Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray made the formal announcement in Vidhan Sabha, on the last day of the week-long winter session in Nagpur.

The scheme would be known as Mahatma Jyotirao Phule Shetkari Karjmukti Yojana, Uddhav told the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly. "This is going to be transparent and the money will go directly to the bank account of farmers," he said, adding that crop loans outstanding till 30 September 2019 will be waived off by the government with an upper limit of Rs 2 lakh.

The government will also work out a special scheme for farmers who repay loans in time.

The BJP has been targetting the Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress government on this issue.

Earlier this week, Uddhav had a detailed meeting with NCP supremo and former Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, the chief architect of the MVA.

The loan waiver comes days ahead of the Cabinet expansion to be undertaken by Uddhav, whose team now comprises of six ministers. The expansion is expected on 23 or 24 December.

State Finance Minister Jayant Patil said that the waiver would be unconditional and details would be communicated by Chief Minister's Office in the days to come.

Meanwhile, Leader of Opposition Devendra Fadnavis said that the government has failed to fulfill the promise of a full loan waiver. "The government has betrayed the mandate of the people and now betrayed the farmers," the two-time former CM said.

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