HYDERABAD: The State government on Monday announced that it would clear the remaining Rs 8,500-crore outstanding crop loans at one go this financial year.
Speaking to reporters here, Agriculture Minister Pocharam Srinivas Reddy said the crop loans would be paid to the bankers this fiscal at any cost. The announcement came in the wake of criticism from opposition and the various joint action committees over the delay in waiving off the loans.
The State government has so far waived Rs 17,000 crore crop loans and paid Rs 8,500 crore to the banks in two instalments. However, since the crop loans have not been cleared in toto, farmers are facing problems in getting fresh loans from the banks. And, despite repeated requests by the government, the bankers have not budged an inch and are insisting on repayment of loans in order to sanction fresh loans.
Alleging that this is one major reason for the spate of farmers’ suicide, the entire Opposition had joined hands inside and outside the Assembly demanding waiver of the remaining 50 per cent amount, Rs 8,500 crore, at one go. “I have already made a statement on crop loan waiver. I will stick to it,” Srinivas Reddy asserted.