Demanding full loan waiver for the farmers of the state, workers of the Kisan Morcha Bhartiya Janta Party Punjab today tried to gherao the CM’s residence here. The police stopped the march using water cannons on the farmers who were protesting against Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh for failing to keep his pre-poll promise of a full loan waiver. Hundreds of farmers joined protest march from all across the state which was led by Punjab BJP vice-president Harjit Singh Grewal, state BJP secretary Vineet Joshi, state BJP Kisan Morcha president and ex-MLA Sukhpal Singh Nannu and state BJP Kisan Morcha general secretaries- Kuldeep Bhangewala and Gurvinder Bhagta.Reminding Capt. Amarinder Singh of his pre-poll promises, Sukhpal Singh Nannu said, “Capt. Amarinder failed to fulfill his commitment by not announcing a full loan waiver in his first cabinet meeting. He had made this promise while holding Gutka Sahib in his hands. Then three months later on June 19, he retracted from his word and announced a partial loan waiver in the Vidhan Sabha. Thereafter Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal allocated a meager Rs 1500 crores in the Budget, but ever since the government hasn’t given anything in writing to the banks. Till the government gives it in writing to the banks, the loans don’t get waived off. Now the Banks have started sending notices to the defaulting farmers and are even putting up their photographs on their notice boards. Not only this, a farmer in his suicide note had even held Capt. Amarinder Singh responsible for his death”.
Meanwhile Grewal and Joshi said, “Over 162 farmers have committed suicide during Captain’s 135 days of rule. What is more disturbing is that after the CM made the announcement of partial loan waiver in the Assembly instead of full loan waiver, as promised by him during elections, 82 farmers have ended their lives. Citing the poor financial condition of the state, Captain has shown helplessness to waive off the loans in full, but what about such promises where huge finances are not involved. He had promised a compensation of Rs. 20,000 per acre in case of natural calamities, Rs. 10 Lakhs compensation and a job to a family member of the farmer who commits suicide, creation of a price stabilization fund and providing health and life insurance of Rs five Lakhs for farmers, but none of them have been fulfilled till now. Maybe the government doesn’t want to honour its promises. What reflects the anti farmer/ rural area intentions of the government is the fact that Amarinder government is planning to amend the Panchayati Raj Act, thereby withdrawing power to remove Sarpanchs or Panchs from Director Panchayts and according it to the Deputy Commissioners. This will be detrimental to the interests of farmers and villagers”.Warning Captain Amarinder Singh of a state-wide stir, the BJP Kisan Morcha said that he announce full loan waiver immediately. BJP would not allow the farmers of the state to be neglected at any cost and it will continue its protest until the demands of farmers are met, said Nannu.