Modi govt pro-poor, farmers interests will be protected: Paswan

Chandigarh, Mar 31: A delegation led by Union Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan today took stock of crops damaged in Haryana by untimely rains and hailstorm.

During the meet, the state government has sought total relief of Rs 1,135.91 crore which included loss on account of crops damaged, assistance for interest loss on loans etc.

File photo of Ram Vilas Paswan

Paswan, who was accompanied by Minister of State for Agriculture Sanjeev Kumar Balyan assured the BJP led Haryana government of Centre's full support to protect the interest of farmers whose crops had got damaged because of untimely rains and hailstorm.

The Union Food and Public Distribution minister also assured the state government to give relaxation in wheat procurement norms in the wake of crop quality getting affected because of inclement weather conditions.

"Prime Minister Narendra Modi has sent us to take stock of situation in Haryana. We will submit our report to him with the demands for compensation raised by Haryana government," Paswan said while addressing media here after holding a meeting with ministers and senior officials of Haryana government.

Asserting that Modi led government was "pro-farmer and pro-poor", Paswan said, "We assure farmers and farm labourers that their interests will be protected." Khattar led Haryana government during the meeting sought relief of Rs 1,135.91 crore from the Centre.

Out of total relief, the state government has sought compensation of Rs 537.28 crore for damage to standing crops, rise in input cost, Rs 281.02 crore for interest loss due to deferment.

As far as compensation for crop loss was concerned, Haryana government has worked out loss to standing crop because of rains and hailstorm lashed till March 22. Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar said the damage in crops may be more as rains and hailstorm had caused damage to crop during the end of this month.

"The final assessment of crop damage will be done after April 7," said Khattar. Paswan further said Haryana government has also demanded bonus of Rs 100 per quintal for crop loss, besides raising the compensation to Rs 10,000 per acre for 100 per cent crops loss.

On the request of Haryana government, Paswan said that his ministry would relax the standards for wheat procurement after consultations with state government officials. "Relaxation in crop (wheat) procurement norms will be given.

The decision with regard to how much relaxation be given, will be taken after officials of both state government and FCI hold a meeting in this regard," Paswan said.


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