Opposition parties have raised demand for relief to farmers during the past few days. It is clear from the meeting of Prime Minister Modi’s late night talk that they are serious about it. A senior official said that the meeting of the Prime Minister’s BJP president and his cabinet colleagues lasted for two hours on Wednesday night. On Thursday, the rounds of internal meetings continued in the concerned Ministries and Policy Commission on Thursday.
A person associated with these meetings said that the government wants to move forward on such an option which is economically and politically comfortable. The government has four options to provide relief to the farmers, on which one can move forward. They will be given detailed discussions in the upcoming meetings.
Debt forgiveness is not denied
Another official said that under the first option, the government did not completely deny the farmers’ debt waiver, but this is not always possible because Congress President Rahul Gandhi has been demanding this. This is because many states have already declared debt waivers of the farmers. The fiscal system also does not allow it. Instead, the government can go ahead with debt forgiveness to bring such a solution which is more attractive and in the interest of the farmers.
Consider Telangana’s plan
The second option may be that the government can bring a plan to increase direct income generating benefits for the landowner farmers at national level. Such a plan is going on in Telangana. On December 21, a similar scheme has been announced in Jharkhand. These are schemes where cash will be provided directly to the farmers’ accounts before the sowing season.
Each landlord is given Rs 4,000 per acre for the farmers in Telangana. That is, about 12,000 crores of rupees are given to farmers in Kharib and Rabi.
In Jharkhand, for the first 5000 rupees per acre of Kharib season, it has been said that the amount of money will be given to the land holder farmers’ account, thus the state will spend Rs.2250 crores.
Crop insurance in 1 rupee
The third option can be of crop insurance on a rupee premium. The fourth option may be to give the amount of Rs 2000 per acre for each farmer after the crop, so that it can be compensated if the crop is damaged in the sale.
Load on government revenue
Siraj Hussain of former Union Agriculture Secretary and think tank ICRIER says – If the government goes to the first option then the burden of 2.8 lakh crore rupees will be borne. At the same time, alternatives like Telangana’s plan may be good, but it will not be a permanent solution to the problem of farmers set up