Fourteen days after assuming office, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath fulfilled his party’s election promise on Tuesday when he waived loans of over 2.15 crore farmers in Uttar Pradesh.
The decision will put a burden of Rs 30,729 crore on the state exchequer. Along with this, the government has also decided to forego Non-Performing Assets (NPA) worth Rs 5,630 crore of 8 lakh farmers.
The first cabinet meeting of the Yogi government decided to float Kisan Rahat Bonds for raising the money required for waiving loans of small and marginal farmers.
The loan waiver, however, comes with a few riders. First, only the small and marginal farmers who had taken loans in the financial year 2015-2016 will be included in the waiver scheme. Second, loans from nationalised and cooperative banks will be eligible for waiver. Third, loans on seeds, fertilisers, and pesticides would be waived off but no waiver would be offered on loans on tractors, equipment and machinery commonly used in farming sector. Those who had taken loans from money-lenders and private individuals have also been kept out of it.
A few days ago, Adityanath had requested the Modi government for a central loan. But the Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had said no to the waiver scheme as it was unviable. Also it would have amounted to favouring BJP government in the state giving an issue to the Opposition-ruled states.
During almost all public rallies, PM Narendra Modi and party President Amit Shah had announced to waive off farmers’ loans in the first Cabinet meeting of the BJP government. It found prominent mention in BJP’s manifesto.
The BJP government Spokesperson said that the Yogi Cabinet has taken as many as nine decisions on the eve of Ram Navami during its first meeting on Tuesday.