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Farmers: No Need for Freebies, But Sound Policies

Farmers have raised voices against the nonfulfillment of promises after getting into power. They said that they don't need freebies, subsidies, and free supply, what they want is sound policies.

Shivani Meena
Farmers raising voice against non fulfillment of promises
Farmers raising voice against non fulfillment of promises

With the Supreme Court sending a notice to the Union government and the Election Commission concerning political parties advertising freebies utilizing public funds, the key problems of farmers, including such loan waivers and compensation to suicide-hit families, may come under scrutiny.

Punjab Spends Rs 7000 Cr on Free Electricity For Agriculture Sector

Parties in Punjab are luring farmers with perks and sometimes even assurances of minimum support prices (MSP) on grains, oilseeds, and veggies, which are normally under the domain of the Centre. Plenty of other freebies, including monthly cash payments to women, have been revealed. Punjab spends about Rs 7,000 crore on free electricity for the agriculture sector, as well as a significant amount on subsidized or free units for certain segments of society.

On Tuesday, a Supreme Court bench comprising of Chief Justice N V Ramana, A S Bopanna, and Huma Kohli issued a notice to establish stringent directions to deregister errant parties and take their symbols.

Punjab Govt. Granted Rs 3 Lakhs of Compensation

According to reports, Punjab farmers have almost Rs 90,000 crore debt on them. Before the 2017 election, Congress promised comprehensive debt relief but only provided 5.6 lakh growers with a waiver of Rs 4,600 crore. The Punjab government granted Rs 3 lakh in compensation for families impacted by agricultural suicides.

It had just recently provided compensation of Rs 5 lakh, in addition to a government job, for families who had lost members during a year's struggle against the controversial agricultural laws, which have now been repealed. "Apart from the Supreme Court notice, political parties merely make announcements to get votes and then forget about them," stated Joginder Singh Ugrahan, president of BKU (Ekta Ugrahan).

Families Affected by Agriculture Suicides, Needs to be Supported

In the same spirit, Manjit Singh Dhaner, vice-president of BKU (Ekta Dakaunda), stated, "We promise an agriculture strategy that avoids freebies. Farm families that have been affected by agriculture suicides, on the other hand, need to be supported."

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