Relief package coming for TN farmers in distress?

Their relentless, 14-day agitation finally got them an audience with the Union government on Tuesday.

Published: 22nd March 2017 03:33 AM  |   Last Updated: 22nd March 2017 05:04 AM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: In one of the most macabre methods of protest Delhi’s Jantar Mantar has seen, Tamil Nadu farmers have been sitting with skulls of fellow tillers who allegedly committed suicide due to crop failure — two each day since last October. Their relentless, 14-day agitation finally got them an audience with the Union government on Tuesday.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley met with a representative group of Tamil Nadu farmers led by Ayyannakannu, in the presence of Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha, M Thambidurai. It was seen as the first sign of hope that maybe, if not all their demands of Rs 40,000 crore drought relief, loan waivers, a new Cauvery Management Board and river linking are met, some broader initiative would be taken to address their plight.

“To wipe away their tears, if not the entire loans,’’ as a source privy to the discussions said. About 12 lakh acres of farm land in the Cauvery belt have been affected in what is the worst drought in a century and a half. Indeed, the tangible contours of how the demands of the protesting TN farmers would be kept was not clear. But Jaitley did indicate that the Finance Ministry would be talking to the RBI to try and see what kind of relief measures can be given. It could be noted here that the nationalised banks have shown resistance towards a blanket waiver of farm loans.


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp