Congress Waived Nearly 27 Lakh Farm Loans In Madhya Pradesh, BJP Admits

The admission by the Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led BJP government came during the single-day session of the state Assembly

Congress Waived Nearly 27 Lakh Farm Loans In Madhya Pradesh, BJP Admits

Former Chief Minister Kamal Nath was accused of "fraud" over farm loan waivers (File)

Bhopal:

The loans of nearly 27 lakh Madhya Pradesh farmers were waived off during the 15-month tenure of the Kamal Nath-led Congress government, the ruling BJP - which had earlier alleged a "fraud" on this matter - said Monday.

The admission by the Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led BJP government, which came to power earlier this year after the dramatic fall of the Congress, came during the single-day session of the state Assembly.

Agriculture Minister Kamal Patel gave written replies to questions about farm loan waivers that had been asked by two Congress MLAs - Jaivardhan Singh and Bala Bachchan.

Mr Patel informed the House that 26,95,381 cases of farm loans worth up to Rs 1 lakh each had been waived off. The total value of loans waived off, the minister said, was around Rs 11,000 crore.

According to the data provided the loans of around 20.2 lakh farmers were waived in the first phase alone. There were also around 5.91 lakh cases still awaiting a waiver, the minister said.

In April, after being sworn in as the Agriculture Minister, Mr Patel told NDTV that it was unclear if farmers' outstanding loans had, indeed been waived.

"Within two hours of being sworn in as Chief Minister, Kamal Nath signed the file to waive farm loans of around 48 lakh farmers (worth Rs 54,000 crore) in line with a poll promise made by Rahul Gandhi. But only waiver certificates have been distributed to eligible farmers. It is still not clear if the outstanding loans have been waived," he said.

Mr Patel had also urged those farmers who received certificates but not waivers to lodge cases of fraud and criminal conspiracy against both Kamal Nath and Rahul Gandhi.

"I appeal to those farmers who have got certificates but haven't had loans waived to lodge cases of fraud and criminal conspiracy against Kamal Nath, Rahul Gandhi and the previous Congress government," he had declared.

"We'll act on those cases immediately," he had said.

The former Agriculture Minister, Sachin Yadav, has said this admission (that farm loans had been waived) by the BJP had exposed a "politics of lies" pursued solely to defame the Kamal Nath government.