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The Hindu
The Hindu
The Hindu Bureau

BJP will raise crop loss compensation, farm loan waiver during winter session, says Leader of Opposition Ashok

Leader of Opposition in the Assembly R. Ashok has said that his party will move a motion during the winter session in Belagavi on crop loss compensation to be paid to farmers who have lost their standing crops to drought and the need for waiving crop loans borrowed by farmers.

“For the first time after assuming office as Leader of Opposition, I have visited Kalaburagi district and interacted with farmers. Those who have lost their crops to drought have complained that they have not received any crop loss compensation. I came to know that farmers are in distress due to drought and they are not in a condition to repay loans borrowed from banks. We will raise these issues in the Belagavi winter session of the Legislature,” Mr. Ashok told media representatives at Pala village in the district on Tuesday.

When asked about the BJP-led Union government’s role and contribution in the farm loan waiver and crop loss compensation, the BJP leader said that H.D. Kumaraswamy had, when he was Chief Minister, waived farm loans without waiting for the Union government’s assistance.

“We, the BJP leaders, have toured the entire State and studied the drought condition. The farmers are in a crisis because of drought. We have appealed to the government time and again to pay drought compensation to the affected farmers. The government has, however, done nothing on the issue,” Mr. Ashok said.

Admitting that there are hurdles in payment of compensation to farmers, Mr. Ashok recalled his tenure as Revenue Minister and in-charge of SDRF [State Disaster Response Fund] and his initiatives for the quick payment of relief.

“I was Revenue Minister and in-charge of SDRF and I know the hurdles in the payment of relief to farmers. It normally takes eight months to pay compensation. I had, however, devised a new mechanism for quickly gathering crop loss data using a mobile application and paying compensation within two months. We did not wait for the Union government to step in. The Union government aid was later deposited in the government’s account. Probably, the State government treasury is exhausted and that is why the government is not paying drought relief,” Mr. Ashok said.

On the destruction of crops in the district, Mr. Ashok said that red gram growers who produce and supply tur dal to the entire State are in distress as they have lost their standing crop at the crucial flowering stage.

Later in the day, Mr. Ashok visited the BJP office in Kalaburagi and encouraged party workers to work hard to bring back the party to power in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

“Let us pledge to win 24 seats in the coming Lok Sabha elections. If we can achieve this goal, the Congress government in the State will automatically fall. Some of the BJP leaders have not yet come out of the shock of the defeat in the last Assembly elections. How long can we sit like this? We have to move on. The night has to pave way for daybreak. We have to see Narendra Modi continuing as Prime Minister of India. For that to happen, we need to set aside our differences and work hard for the party’s victory,” he said.

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