Delhi: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaram has announced credit card, agriculture sector relief for 3 crore small and marginal farmers. 30,000 crore relief package, but no benefit to small farmers.
The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has been asked to provide an additional emergency fund of Rs 30,000 crore. This would be in addition to the Rs 90,000 crore provided by NABARD. NABARD will provide these funds to the State Cooperative Banks and Regional Rural Banks. Which will give money to farmers at interest.
People who lack enough money and land to cultivate fall into the category of small and marginal farmers.
Where NABARD will raise Rs 30,000 crore has become a question in itself. The government’s new decision could make it difficult for NABARD to raise money from the market. Last month, the Reserve Bank of India announced Rs 25,000 crore to NABARD. The Reserve Bank will now provide another assistance of Rs 30,000 crore to NABARD.
The condition of rabi crop has deteriorated
Rain, hail, hurricanes, high soil moisture, epidemics, crop failure in Corona have rotted in the fields at harvest time. This increase has taken a heavy toll on farmers.
The Center for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) claims that 147.2 million tonnes of Ravi foodstuffs will be produced during 2019/20, which is 2.3 per cent more than the 143.9 million tonnes produced in the previous Ravi season. This is less than the preliminary estimate of 149.6 million tonnes for 2019/20 released by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer Welfare in February 2020. How these estimates have been prepared and given raises a dilemma for farmers.
According to the Agricultural Census, 2015-16, the total number of small and marginal farmers in the country was 126 million. This means that NABARD’s additional Rs 30,000 crore has failed to cover even a quarter of it.
About 30 per cent of the sons of the earth borrow money from private lenders. Which takes high interest and mortgages the land. Small farmers cannot pay their interest and principal and hence become landless.
In fact, bank loans are not given to such farmers and the BJP government does not have to help.