A week after farmers from different parts of the country staged an agitation in Delhi raising several demands, including a loan waiver, BJP Kisan Morcha’s national president and Bhadohi MP Virendra Singh Mast Thursday said that a loan waiver was not a permanent solution for the farming community. Mast also accused the opposition parties of misleading farmers and proposed dialogue with the farmer leaders to resolve the issues of the farming community.
While BJP-led governments in different states have implemented a loan waiver for farmers in the past and the Congress in its poll manifesto in different poll-bound states has also promised a loan waiver for farmers, Mast said that steps should be taken for a permanent solution.
Speaking to the media a day before elections in Rajasthan and Telangana, Mast said a discussion on farmers’ issues would be taken up in the upcoming session of Parliament and he would take up genuine demands of the farmers with the government.
Mast claimed that he invited the leaders of various farmers’ organisations for a discussion when they took out a march in Delhi last week but the meeting could not happen. “I am again saying that I am open for discussion on all issues faced by farmers and will take up their genuine demands with the government,” the BJP MP said.
Mast accused the opposition parties of politicising the issue for their own political interest and “using” the farmers to remain relevant. He claimed that the Narendra Modi government has taken more steps for farmers than any other government since Independence.”Farmers and agriculture have always been the priority for the Modi government and BJP. The government dedicated 52 per cent of its total allocations in the budget to them,” Mast said.
He said the loan waiver can only provide temporary relief. Responding to Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s promise of waiving farm loans if his party was voted to power in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh, Mast said that Rahul does not understand agriculture and was a “problem” for farmers.