BENGALURU: Delivering on Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy’s most ambitious poll promise of farm loan waiver is proving an uphill task for the coalition government. It has failed to come up with a clear action plan even as the 15-days’ time sought by Kumaraswamy to unveil his road map expired on Thursday.
There were expectations of a clear-cut decision from the coordination committee headed by former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah which had its first meeting on Thursday. While the committee decided to formulate a Common Minimum Programme(CMP) for the smooth functioning of the coalition government within 10 days and set a 7-day deadline to appoint heads for various boards and corporations, it did not come out with any detail on implementing the farm loan waiver.
A five-member committee, which will be constituted to formulate the CMP, will decide on the way ahead on farm loan waiver too, Siddaramaiah said.“Both the parties have made promises in their manifestos. There are practical difficulties in implementing some of them. The committee will study all the promises and incorporate those which are practical,” Siddaramaiah said dropping hints about the hurdles for the coalition partners in delivering on their promise to farmers.
Asked why there is no specific assurance from the coordination committee on the waiver, Deputy CM G Parameshwara said, “We cannot fix a deadline of 15 days to fulfil the promise on farm loan waiver. It is an issue that involves thousands of crores. We (Congress) stand by Kumaraswamy’s promise. But we need time.”
No preparatory work either is seen on the ground even 15 days after Kumaraswamy’s assurance. “Nothing has come of Kumaraswamy’s announcement. Even the waiver announced by the previous Siddaramaiah government has not reached the district administration or the banks yet. This is a coalition government and both are busy pointing fingers at each other,” said Shantamma Mulay, a farmer from Bidar who had attended the meeting convened by Kumaraswamy recently to discuss the implementation of the farm loan waiver.
“Neither the banks nor the government officials have told us anything about the loan waiver that was promised. We are still waiting but have very little hope. Where will the farmers go now? The promise of waiver has remained a mere promise. This is disappointing. Neither do we know who the nodal officer is nor do we know what documents are to be submitted. There is no communication from the government,” Mulay said expressing disappointment. However, agriculture minister N H Shivashankara Reddy said the modalities were being worked out and the details would be announced soon
PROMISE ON PAPER?
5-member panel to decide on way ahead
There are practical difficulties, says Siddu
We cannot fix any deadline, says DyCM