Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Tuesday announced to waive electricity bills of farmers whose crops were recently damaged due to rain and hailstorm in various parts of the state.
Khattar who made the announcements after the question hour in the ongoing assembly session, said he had also written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking immediate interim relief of `500 crore to provide timely and complete assistance to the affected farmers.
Briefing the members of the House on a number of important decisions taken in the interest of the farmers, Khattar said that the government had decided to provide the next short-term crop loan to the farmers at 0 % (zero per cent) interest rate from cooperative banks.
He said 100% rebate would be given in agriculture electricity bills to farmers whose crops had been affected to the extent of 51% to 100% by hailstorm and rain for six months before and six months after the damage to the crops. Likewise, 50% rebate would be given in the electricity bills to farmers whose crops were damaged to the extent of 25% to 50 %.
Khattar said that the government had also decided to allow the farmers to pay their crop loans in three years instead of about a year. “The work on special girdawari is in full swing and would be completed by March 31, 2015,” he added.
Khattar said the PM had announced to give to give a monthly pension of `5,000 to the farmers after they attained 60 years of age.
The decision was welcomed by all present in the House, though leader of the Opposition Abhay Chautala and several other Opposition MLAs held that the step would have had support of the entire House had the government brought up a resolution in this regard.