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What is Maha govt doing to help rain-hit farmers? Fadnavis

Former Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on Tuesday said the Centre would definitely help the state in the wake of damages caused due to heavy rains, but the state government should also spell out what it is doing to provide relief to the affected farmers.

PTI | Aurangabad | Updated: 20-10-2020 12:07 IST | Created: 20-10-2020 12:07 IST
What is Maha govt doing to help rain-hit farmers? Fadnavis

Former Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on Tuesday said the Centre would definitely help the state in the wake of damages caused due to heavy rains, but the state government should also spell out what it is doing to provide relief to the affected farmers. Talking to reporters in Osmanabad district during a tour to assess losses caused by heavy rains, Fadnavis said the three ruling parties in the state have many differences among them, but they are expert in getting away from their responsibilities.

"The NDA government will surely help more than the earlier (UPA) government. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has already spoken to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and assured him about it, but the state government must also tell what it is doing to provide aid to farmers," he said. The Centre is also facing the COVID-19 pandemic as is the state government, he said.

"But, the Centre will not stop funding the state. The Centre has already paid Rs 20,000 crore till March this year. To pay further debts of the state, the central government is taking a loan of Rs 1 lakh crore," said the leader of opposition in the Maharashtra Assembly.

Due to heavy rains, the soil of farms is washed away at many places. Hence, a scheme should be initiated to help farmers facing such issues, he said. Wells are filled with silt and orchards have also suffered damages due to the heavy rains, he noted.

"Earlier, our government considered a photograph of losses as the survey. On the same lines, the present state government must work and complete surveys fast and immediate help should be given to farmers in rain-hit areas," he said. He showed to reporters two past videos in which Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, were seen demanding concrete help for farmers from the then Fadnavis-led government.

"Those who demanded aid for farmers earlier have a chance to keep their word now. Those in the government should be more patient, but the ruling party leaders are indulging in politics. The state should help the farmers," he said. Targeting NCP chief Sharad Pawar, whose party is an ally of the state government, Fadnavis said, "Pawar never says anything wrong. He knows the way and when the central government's aid will come to state." "At present, he has a responsibility to defend the inefficiency of the present state government and he is doing that," he added.

Fadnavis further said he agreed with Sharad Pawar that the state government needs to take loan for helping farmers. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has increased the loan limit of Maharashtra to Rs 1.20 lakh crore.

He also said that there are complaints that government officials have not reached out to farmers for surveys of the damage caused due to heavy rains and floods. The state should increase its manpower and get the surveys done, he said.

Asked about the state government's decision to allow women to travel in local trains in Mumbai, Fadnavis said the Railways has taken a clear stand over this and demanded information regarding the necessary number of trainsand other issues. If such details are provided, the Railways can accordingly run the trains (for women), he said.

On the Maharashtra government's decision to conduct a probe into the "irregularities" in the Jalyukt Shivar water conservation scheme, a pet project of Fadnavis, the BJP leader said, "The state government cannot shut my mouth by such inquiries." "Leader of opposition is of the people and he will speak for the people. There were six lakh works done under the scheme in a decentralised manner and only 700 complaints are received. "I will talk more on it after the present crisis of farmers is over," he said.

On Pawar's claim that those who left the NCP earlier were keen to come back to the party, Fadnavis said, "Not a single person (from BJP) will go." PTI AW GK GK.


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