Raising concerns over the losses faced by farmers due to floods and unseasonal rains, non-NDA MPs on Thursday alleged that the Centre is yet to provide monetary relief to the states. Participating in a discussion on "crop loss due to various reasons and its impact on farmers", S S Palanimanickam (DMK) demanded that there should be complete loan waiver for the farmers due to the losses faced by them. He added that fishermen should be treated on par with farmers as they too have been hit by natural calamities.
Kalyan Banerjee (TMC) said the Centre had assured compensation to the West Bengal government after Cyclone Bulbul hit the state this year. However, it has not received about money, he added.
Banerjee alleged that the Centre shows promptness in releasing money for Gujarat, a BJP-ruled state. Vinayak Raut (Shiv Sena) said seasonal rains have hit Maharashtra badly and 34 of the 36 districts have been affected due to this.
"First unprecedented floods and then unseasonal rains have hit the farmers very hard. The natural calamity has not spared a single crop. Rice, wheat, bajra, pomegranate, cotton...all have been destroyed, " Raut said, demanding that the Centre gives immediate relief of Rs 40,000 crore.
Raut said fishermen too have been hit. The Arabian Sea has witnessed formation of five cyclones in 2019, a development recorded after 127 years. Bhartuhari Mahtab (BJD) also said his state Odisha is yet to get relief from the Centre as two cyclones -- Foni and Bulbul -- have hit them.
He claimed that farmers through purchase of fertilisers, pesticides, tractors and other farming-related equipment and accessories pay GST of Rs 15,000 crore. "Farmers are being pauperised," Mahtab said.
Kaulshendra Kumar of JDU, an NDA ally, said the government is aiming to double the income of farmers by 2022, but it will not be possible by giving them Rs 2000. He was referring to the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi. Under the scheme, farmers will get an income of Rs 6000 in a year in three instalments.
Nand Kumar Chouhan and Devji Patel (BJP), Abu Taher Khan (TMC) and P Ramulu (TRS) emphasised on linking MNREGA scheme with agriculture during discussion on crop loss due to various reasons and its impact on farmers. Some of the members also raised the issue of inefficiency in Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana.
Devusinh Chauhan (BJP) said only public sector insurance companies are allowed to sell crop insurance while Danish Ali (BSP) pointed out that Fasal Bima Yojana is not helping farmers but making private sector insurance companies richer.
A M Ariff (CPI-M) said the anti-farmer policies of the government have crushed farmers who have no choice to but to end their lives. Jaydev Galla (TDP) it has become ritual to discuss farmers issue but their condition has not improved. Fifty-one members participated in the debate and it remained inconclusive.