Nagpur, Mar 4 (UNI) Shiv Sena executive President Uddhav Thackeray today demanded the Maharashtra Government to announce loan waiver for farmers holding up to 15 acres of land in Vidarbha, Marathwada and North Maharashtra regions of the state.
Speaking to newspersons here, Mr Thackeray said the decision to waive loans of such farmers was a ''major step'' by the Centre.
However, it would not provide complete succour to the distressed ones in the state, he said.
Citing an example, Mr Thackeray said a farmer from Wardha district, Dattu Chaudhari, committed suicide yesterday as he had an outstanding debt of Rs 70,000, inspite of having 7 acres of land.
''Now that the Centre has announced the waiver, the state government must step in and provide further relief to the farmers. It should waive off their loans in the regions, who hold up to 15 acres of land. There should be no hitch since the Centre is now bearing some burden,'' he said.
It was unfortunate that the NCP and the Congress were trying to take 'credit' for the decision and were 'celebrating' the move, when it was actually the result of unity shown by the state farmers Mr Thackeray said, adding that the party was not claiming credit for it.
''It is nothing to be overjoyed about, but to be concerned, since mere loan waiver will not solve the problems of farmers. It is a moment for serious introspection, not for celebration, because the move has come after over 1.5 lakh farmers ended their lives in the entire country because of indebtedness,'' he said.
Mr Thackeray said the government had declared its intention of taking action against private money lenders, who lend money to farmers, but it had not announced any measure to protect the land that the cultivators have pledged to get the money.
In reply to a question, Mr Thackeray said the Shiv Sena's 'Deta Ka Jata' (Give or Go) agitation would continue. The Congress would lose if a mid-term poll were to be held now and the Shiv Sena was ready to face the electorate any time, he added.
UNI AB OBB GL HT1945