Insensitive of PM Modi to compare farm loan waiver with lollipop, says Kisan Sabha | India News

NEW DELHI: The All India Kisan Sabha on Wednesday condemned Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s allegedly “insensitive” remarks equating farm loan waivers to lollipops. The umbrella organisation that has been seeking government intervention to rein in the deepening farm crises said that in the times of acute agrarian crisis, falling farm incomes and growing indebtedness, loan waiver has a palliative effect provided it reaches real cultivators. “To the crisis-stricken peasantry it could provide much-needed temporary relief.

Notably, talk of loan waivers are also happening in a context wherein the BJP Government has totally failed to curb rising costs of production and have not been able to ensure remunerative prices for crops,” AIKS said.

AIKS leaders Hannan Mollah and Ashok Dhawale, who were the main organisers of the Farmer Long March in 2018, also accused PM Modi of being hit by “selective amnesia” and claimed his statement on farm loan waivers smacked of “dishonesty”. “All through the 2014 election campaign his speeches were laced with not merely the promise of loan waiver to farmers but also the promise of Rs.15 lakh into every account.

Faced with intense struggles by the AIKS and other organisations of the peasantry under the banner of AIKSCC, the Prime Minister once again assured of farm loan waivers in February, 2017 before the Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh. BJP Governments in Maharashtra and Rajasthan were also forced to announce farm loan waivers after consistent struggles of the peasantry, Rather than dump the entire idea the BJP Government should look at the Kerala Debt Relief Commission and take steps to ensure that loan waivers reach the real cultivators, especially the landless tenants, small and middle peasantry,” a statement released by the farmer organisation said.

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AIKS also sought to remind Modi and BJP that demonetisation was among the reasons farm incomes had declined and farmers had been pushed into extreme indebtedness.

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