Doubts over state’s `11,000-cr crop loan repayment claim
A day after the state said it would give drought-hit farmers more time to repay crop loans, cracks are emerging about how the government plans to restructure the loans worth Rs11,000 crore.
Restructuring means converting short-term one-year loans to medium-term loans, where repayment duration is extended to five years.
While political parties and agricultural experts welcome the move, doubts persist about how it will be implemented, and several experts have pointed out how the figures could be exaggerated.
On Tuesday, the state cabinet approved restructuring crop loans worth Rs10,941 crore in 26,670 drought-hit villages across the state. The move was meant to ensure farmers get more time to clear debt and are still eligible to get fresh credit this year. Of the amount, the government estimated last year’s crop loans would be worth Rs5,000 crore, while another Rs3,503 crore of loans from the 2014 Kharif sowing season will be restructured.
The government has decided to ask the Reserve Bank of India permission to restructure Rs2,438 crore of outstanding loans taken by 4.4 lakh farmer in 2012-13 and 2013-14. But these figures are contentious.