Budget 2019-20: Crop loan waiver gets Rs 12,650 crore 

Budget 2019-20: Crop loan waiver gets Rs 12,650 crore 

DH Photo

Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy has set aside Rs 12,650 crore toward his pet crop loan waiver scheme in 2019-20 fiscal. 

Kumaraswamy, who presented the ruling coalition’s second budget, has kept Rs 6,500 crore for waiver of crop loans borrowed from commercial banks and Rs 6,150 crore to those in the cooperative sector. 

Last year, the State government announced a Rs 46,000 crore waiver of crop loans borrowed by nearly 42 lakh farmers. The waiver will be phased over a four-year period, Kumaraswamy had announced in his 2018-19 budget. So far this fiscal, till January, the government has released Rs 1,611 crore toward crop loans of 2.38 lakh farmers. 

This year, the government has set a May 2019 deadline to complete waiving of all loans in the cooperative sector. The government wants to complete the loan waiver in commercial banks in 2019-20 as well. However, a specific deadline has not been set for this. 

Kumaraswamy has also announced a new Gruhalaxmi Crop Loan scheme targeted at small and tiny farmers. Under this scheme, loans will be provided at 3% interest rate in exchange for mortgaging ornaments. This, Kumaraswamy said in his budget speech, will prevent farmers, especially women, from being exploited by private moneylenders.