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Punjab to launch farm debt waiver today

Statesman News Service | Chandigarh |

Punjab government’s much awaited farm loan waiver scheme will be launched on Sunday with over 46,000 farmers in five districts set to receive first installment of the debt relief scheme.
Punjab Chief Minister (CM) Amarinder Singh will on Sunday formally launch the farm debt waiver scheme from Mansa district. The other districts being covered under the scheme include Bathinda, Faridkot, Muktsar and Moga.

Each beneficiary farmer, who has taken loan of less than Rs Two lakh, would get about Rs 40,000 as first installment of the waiver scheme. Addressing a Press conference, additional chief secretary (co-operation) DP Reddy and additional chief secretary (development), Viswajeet Khanna said the government had already identified 5.63 lakh farmers, who had taken loan of nearly Rs 2,700.00 Crore from cooperative institutions as on 31 March 2017 as beneficiaries for disbursement of the debt waiver certificates in the first of the four planned phases for completion of the entire process.

Of these, the process of verification had been completed for 3.20 lakh farmers. As many as 1.60 lakh cases with loans to worth Rs 748 crore had been approved pan Punjab. The symbolic launch event at Mansa will witness disbursement of debt relief certificates to the tune of Rs 167.39 Crore to nearly 47000 eligible marginal and small farmers, who had taken loans from 701 Primary Agriculture Cooperative Societies of the five districts of Mansa, Bathinda, Faridkot, Muktsar and Moga. Reddy said an extensive plan had been prepared, in association with the departments of agriculture and revenue, for finalisation of the list of eligible farmers.

As per the plan, the entire debt waiver process would be completed in four phases. In the first phase, verified marginal farmers would be handed over the debt relief certificates and the rest in subsequent phases, after proper verification.

hanna said that loans of farmers taken from commercial and private banks would be settled thereafter under the Debt Relief Scheme-2017 already notified by the State, whereby marginal farmers having land holdings less than 2.5 acres and small farmers having land less than FIVE acres, who have taken loan upto Rs Two lakh, would be provided debt relief.