Lie: Modi Government is a pro-farmer Government

#Truth: The Modi-Government is anti-farmer and anti-poor. It is a ‘#SootBootKiSarkar’ which promotes crony-capitalism.

When the new government assumed power in Uttar Pradesh in March of 2017 with Yogi Adityanath, a seer-turned-politician, as Chief Minister, the BJP and the media presented this victory as though Uttar Pradesh was set upon a deliverance.

The State of Uttar Pradesh is one of the key agrarian areas in India. Rural area constitutes around 80% of the state. More than 60% of the population is dependent on agriculture and allied sectors for their livelihood. Farm loan crisis, induced by crop failure due to bad monsoons, lack of forward and backward linkages, comprises of nearly 43% of farmers’ woes in agricultural India. BJP’s election campaign revolved around a grandiose facade of resolving this issue.

After immediately coming to power, Uttar Pradesh’s Yogi Adityanath government announced that debt of around 86 lakh farmers will be waived phase-wise. Accordingly, in the first phase, 11.93 lakh farmers were to be benefited. However, a couple of months after the announcement, peculiar irregularities have been unearthed.

An eyewash

Farm loans up to Rs 1 lakh were to be waived. However, the ground reality of this is dismal. Farmers’ debt that amounted to as low as 19 paise were waived and were certified to be debt-free. They received certificates declaring waiver of Rs 10, Rs 215 etc. Over 11,700 farmers in Uttar Pradesh received relief for outstanding debt amount ranging from Re 1 to Rs 500 under the state government’s farm loan waiver scheme. In several other cases, farmers received the measly amount of Rs 10 even when their debt amounted to Rs 90,000.

The eyewash doesn’t stop there. Economic Survey released by the Government of India in the month of August this year had reasoned that waiving of loans, that will be beneficial to nearly 86 lakh farmers, not only making them debt-free but also increasing the net wealth, in turn, increasing the purchasing power of farm households. This was directly correlated to increase in GDP. While this in itself was debatable, the ground reality of measly waivers displays that even this will have very little effect on the purchasing power of the households.

The scenario in a drought-stricken Maharashtra is similar. Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi’s visit to Maharashtra this month highlighted the grave condition of farmers. 21 of 36 districts are affected by drought with more than 9000 farmer suicides since Maharashtra’s BJP government came to power in 2014. However, debt-ridden farmers of Maharashtra still look hopefully for the promised government’s aid. But with current revelations, of “UP model” of loan waiver”, the hopes for Maharashtra farmers looks dismal.

BJP has time and again demonstrated its arrogance in dealing with a grave issue and also showed us that all it cares about is conflating numbers for propaganda irrespective of the real impact on human lives. This outrageous approach, while it helps Uttar Pradesh’s BJP government make headlines, it has, more importantly, made a mockery of a perilous issue.  What one can’t deny is that the only thing that is monumental is BJP’s foolish delusions that it can deceive the nation with cooked up numbers.

Image Courtesy: Rediff

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