Vidarbha wants Rs.30,000 crore from NDA FM's First Budget Kitty
Nagpur-9th June 2014
Farmers in Maharashtra's Vidarbha region are hoping for a Rs.30,000 crore (Rs.300 billion) development package in Finance minister Arun Jaitley’s budget, only two days away.
According to the Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti (VJAS) president Kishore Tiwari , in view of the neglect faced by the region since independence, it was high time the central government looks at Vidarbha seriously and announces a hefty development package.
Attention of FM Arun Jaitley has been drawn towards serious approach PM Narendra Modi and his agenda to address National Agrarian crisis with help of profitable price to market volatile agriculture Produce, direct incentive and suicides for adoption new technology and micro-irrigation facilities hence special financial package and decision to constitute ‘ Nation commission to prevent farmer suicide’ is needed as every year agriculture productivity is touching to new record level at the same time farmers distress and despair is resulting in record number farm suicides hence this special appeal, Tiwari added.
‘There are daily reports that FM is discussing agrarian crisis with Govt. aided NGO and media centric expert and discussion of PM stressing need of second green revolution but type of exercise and talk ,we have seen last decade UPA regime which has reported record more than 2 lakhs farmers suicides ,hence any hostile approach will trigger another spiral of farmers suicides’ Tiwari warned .
"The UPA and existing Maharashtra government has spent over Rs.5,000 crore towards the irrigation backlog in the past 6 years, but it has failed to yield any benefit to the region as fund was syphoned out and target area of dry land farmers who are in debt and distressed ," VJAS president Tiwari said.
He demanded a Rs.30, 000 crore package, which would take care of the huge backlog for the region, help sustainable crop promotion and mega micro irrigation schemes and , take care of agriculture credit issue and other infrastructure development in the region.
Since 2006, the state government has announced two separate packages worth Rs.5,825 crore. This was followed up by a loan waiver from the central government of Rs.4,600 crore and from the state Rs.1,100 crore (the figure for this region) in 2009.
"Yet, suicides have not stopped, the region continues to be backward and the sentiments are strongly in favour of a separate state of Vidarbha," Tiwari pointed out.
According to NCRB official figures, almost 50,000 farmers have committed suicide in Maharashtra SINCE 2004, of which a majority fall in the Vidarbha region.
"Despite such a large number of deaths, the state has not announced any concrete welfare measures for the farm widows, for the education of their children, employment opportunities and marriage of the girls," Tiwari said
Their major demands include - minimum support price (MSP) for cotton and soybean to match the production cost with a 50 per cent profit margin; new crop loan to farmers after waiving their existing debt dues; bringing in new technology in agriculture and irrigation; financial assistance for farm widows and higher education facilities to their wards hence vidarbha farmers has urged FM for special kitty to stop ongoing farmer suicides, Tiwari urged
He urged the finance minister to display his generosity in the next budget by making a substantial allocation for the Vidarbha region.