Mumbai: On the budget day, farmer leader Rakesh Tikait said that the government should provide a separate budget for farmers so that various issues of the farming community can be resolved.
He also sought a waiver for the farm loans of farmers.
Speaking on the Ghazipur border, where farmers have been opposing the newly enacted agricultural laws for the last two months, Tikait said that there should be a separate budget for the agricultural sector, saying that as farmers are facing tough times the government should also waive the loans of farmers.
He said that there should be a plan to provide free electricity to farmers.
“A separate fund for agricultural work under the MNREGA (Mahatma Gandhi Employment Guarantee Act), regular payment to agricultural labourers should be announced,” he said.
Referring to the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KSAN) scheme, which aims to provide income support to all landholding farmer families across the country, Tikait said that income support can be mobilized.
Under the scheme, income assistance of Rs 6,000 per year in three equal instalments will be provided to small and marginal farmer families, who will have joint land and ownership of up to 2 hectares.
The farmer leader further said that increasing the price of crops will not pave the way for the upliftment of the agricultural sector and farmers and the government needs to put more efforts in this area and work on the availability of electricity and water to the farmers.
He said that farmers in Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar are paying different bills for water and electricity, but the crops are getting the same price. Bharatiya Kisan Union leader requested Center to exempt agricultural machinery from tax.