Unique Budget for farmers: Holkar

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Nashik, Feb 29 (UNI) Changdev Holkar, Chairman, National Agricultural Co-operative Marketing Federation Of India (NADFED), termed the Union Budget 2008-2009 announced by Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram today, as a 'Unique' one for farmers all over the nation.

''This is a very good 'Unique' Budget for farmers for the first time, Rs 60,000 crore waiver of loan has been given. No government has done this and no future government can do this.

This is not only beneficial for Maharashtra farmers but also,for the farmers across the country,'' Holkar said.

''This has become possible due to Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar's efforts. Thanks to the Prime Minister, Finance Minister and the Agricultural Minister,'' Holkar added.

''Reduction in excise duty, increased limit of service tax (from Rs eight lakhs to Rs 10 lakhs) various reforms in custom duty, reduction in excise duty on Automobile industry will provide good atmosphere for automobile related industries,'' said Maharashtra Chamber of Commerce Industry and Agriculture (MACCIA) President Hemant Rathi, in his reaction to the budget.

He also added that there were many reforms expected in direct and indirect tax management and due to no improvement in FDI's, tax audit limit surcharge there was somewhat unhappiness among the corporate sector, investors and the capital market.

''It is a welcome budget, efforts have been made to give something to everyone. Changes in excise and customs taxes will be beneficial for the industries. Facilities provided to automobile industry will have its good effects. The increase in the service tax limit from Rs eight lakhs to Rs 10 lakhs will be beneficial for small industries,'' Ambad Industries and Manufacturers Association(AIMA) President Mr Dhamanjay Bele said.

''It is a very admirable budget, a budget for the farmers and the 'Aam Adami'. It shows that Agricutural Minister and the NCP President Sharad Pawar is behind farmers. He has fulfilled his promise to farmers to make their 7/12 Extract (without any debt notes). All farmers big or small will be benefitted with the loan waiver provision,'' NCP Leader and MLC Dr Vasant Pawar said.

Meanwhile, Shiv Sena District Chief Datta Gaikwad opined that the relief from their loans to farmers is the result of the agitation by Shiv Sena Executive President Uddhav Thackeray and the party.

''If the government wanted to give waiver of loans, it should have done it before. It could have prevented farmers suicides,'' Mr Gaikwad said.

The farmers also celebrated this provision made in the budget happily by arranging processions and distributing sweets.

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