On the whole, the government has claimed the loan waiver, which includes one time settlement option and Rs25,000 compensation to those who repay loans regularly, will benefit nearly 89 lakh farmers.(File photo for representation)
Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on Monday late night announced that 36.10 lakh farmers in the state would get debts completely cleared thanks to his government’s Rs34,000-crore loan waiver scheme.
The district-wise list of beneficiaries also tweeted by Fadnavis, however, is now attracting attention for all the wrong reasons.
The list includes 694 farmers from Mumbai city and 119 farmers from Mumbai suburbs, begging a question over, where exactly do these alleged farmers till their lands in a congested metropolis.
Several took to Twitter to question these alleged farmers from Mumbai city and suburbs to get their loans waived.
The Chief Minister’s Office in its tweet has said that the list refers to farmers, who had taken loans of up to Rs1.5 lakh and whose property records will now be completely cleared of debts thanks to the loan waiver.
On the whole, the government has claimed the loan waiver, which includes one time settlement option and Rs25,000 compensation to those who repay loans regularly, will benefit nearly 89 lakh farmers.
“These could be farmers who own land elsewhere in the state but have moved to Mumbai. They may have leased out their land for tilling but taken loans in their name. We are checking this with the parent department that prepared the data,’’ said an official in the CMO.
The inclusion of these farmers allegedly based in Mumbai puts a question mark on the entire list and could add ammunition to the Opposition’s claims that the loan waiver announced by the state is unlikely to benefit farmers.
The list includes 35 districts with only Wardha in Vidarbha missing in the data. Officials said that farmers’ data from Wardha was still being collated.
The maximum number of beneficiaries are from Buldhana district (2,49,818) in Vidarbha followed by Ahmednagar (2,00,869) in Western Maharashtra region and Beed district (2,08,480) in Marathwada.
The least number of beneficiaries are from Mumbai city (694), Mumbai suburbs (119)and Palghar district (918).
“Even I am wondering if Mumbai has farmers. But, this is the list of proposed beneficiaries, so it will go through scrutiny before it is finalised. We will inquire about the details of the loans, farmers before giving anyone benefit,’’ said chief minister Devendra Fadnavis.
State co-operation minister Subhash Deshmukh said the data had been prepared after taking information from all co-operative banks. “There are some loan accounts from Mumbai and suburbs, but we will verify the list. The benefit will not go to anyone who does not deserve it. It could be farmers who now reside in the city but own land elsewhere,’’ said Deshmukh.