New Delhi, Apr 21 : Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar on Monday said that the Central Government cannot take on new responsibilities of waiving farm loans until the announcements made in the General Budget 2008-09 regarding agricultural loan are implemented.
"We are not in a position to take new responsibilities till the present commitments (Rs 600 billion farm loan waiver package) are implemented," Pawar told the Lok Sabha.
Pawar also said that the government had no specific plan to cover loans taken from moneylenders.
"Let us first implement the farm loan waiver scheme presented in the budget and see the results," he said.
Finance Minister P Chidambaram had announced waiver of 500 billion rupees worth of loans granted to small and marginal farmers and a settlement scheme of 100 billion rupees for other farmers.
Chidambaram had said that the scheme would be completed by June 30 this year.
Giving a reply on separate supplementary question, Pawar said that wheat research institutes and agriculture universities were carrying out research to develop a black rust resistant variety of wheat.
"The said virus has not reached India or its neighbouring countries," he said.