India

Maharashtra farmers call off protests following farm loan waiver

11 Jun 2017 | By Anupama Vijayakumar
Maharashtra government announces farm loan waiver

Following the Maharashtra government's announcement on farm loan waiver, the farmers have temporarily called off their protest.

The farmers had earlier met with a panel of ministers constituted by CM Devendra Fadnavis in an attempt to resolve the issue.

Farmers in the state had been protesting for over 10 days demanding farm loan waiver and fair price for their crops.

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In context: Maharashtra government announces farm loan waiver

11 Jun 2017Maharashtra farmers call off protests following farm loan waiver

ContextWhat context is this happening in?

Farmers in Maharashtra have been protesting over the past 11 days stating demands including farm loan waiver, fair price for their produce and irrigation grants.

The farmers had earlier threatened to intensify the agitation from June 12, if the government did not address their demands.

The government had earlier promised them that loans would be waived by October.

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What has been agreed upon?

DetailsWhat has been agreed upon?

An immediate waiver has been announced for marginal farmers, who are also eligible for fresh disbursement from Sunday.

However, the blanket waiver is only applicable to farmers who have been regular with loan repayment in the past.

However, Raju Shetty, one of the farmer's leaders noted that the farmers will resume protests if the government fails to keep its promise by July 25.

Other assurances made

Revenue minister Chandrakant Patil promised that they are working on a new formula for pricing milk whereby the farmer gets 70% of the profit. They further agreed to send a joint delegation to PM Modi on implementation of the Swaminathan Committee's recommendations, another key demand.

ConsequencesWhat could happen now?

The blanket waiver is estimated to benefit about 5-6 million farmers and is expected to cost the government a whopping Rs. 30,500 crore, while the state's debt is set to cross Rs. 4 lakh crore by March 2018.

RBI Governor Urjit Patel, cautioned state governments considering farm loan waiver to tread carefully, as it would negate fiscal gains made over the past few years.

24 Jun 2017Maharashtra government announces Rs. 34,000 crore farm loan waiver

Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis announced that his cabinet had agreed upon a Rs. 34,000 crore crop loan waiver for farmers.

Loans up to Rs. 1.5 lakhs were completely waived off.

The loan waiver stands to benefit almost 89 lakh farmers in Maharashtra and 40 lakh would be made debt-free.

In order to accommodate this, MLAs will give one month salary to support loan waiver.