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Farm loan waiver must be done scientifically, says Karnataka CM Kumaraswamy

Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy said he is committed to the proposed farm loan waiver he announced in his manifesto and he is also working towards rectifying lapses in the Cauvery water sharing scheme proposed by the Centre.

bengaluru Updated: Jun 19, 2018 22:40 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Bengaluru
Farm loan waiver,Kumaraswamy,manifesto
Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy said once Cauvery water has been allocated, the Cauvery Water Management Board should not dictate how they use the water.(PTI)

In an interaction with the media, Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy said he is committed to the proposed farm loan waiver he announced in his manifesto and he is also working towards rectifying lapses in the Cauvery water sharing scheme proposed by the Centre. Edited excerpts:

On farm loan waiver

During the elections, I announced that I would waive all farm loans if my party was voted in with a majority and I stand by this... I had recently spoken to the Prime Minister about the Centre’s decision on issuing bonds worth Rs 2 lakh crore to help out nationalised banks over loan defaults by large debtors, and in this backdrop I asked if they can divert 25% of that amount to bail out farmers of the country... I have even discussed this with (Congress president) Rahul Gandhi. I know that it (waiver) is not a solution, but I have to waive it at least once because of the distress faced by farmers over the past three years.

On the Cauvery Management Authority, Tamil Nadu has said that it has to be implemented at any cost. Your response.

I have said already that there is no question of going against the Supreme Court’s order. But there are some issues. Any such scheme in an inter-state dispute has to be discussed in both houses of Parliament.

You said the waiver will be scientific. What does that mean?

When I say scientific, I mean that we have to decide till when we will waive loans and the quantum.

Right-wing elements have made statements on Gauri Lankesh recently. Will you take action against them?

I have already instructed officials to take action against any person who has violated Constitutional provisions.

What are the unscientific schemes that you oppose in the Cauvery verdict?

We have been directed to release water every 10 days to Tamil Nadu and give a report on this to the Board. We are also expected to grow the crops that they ask us to. In my view, once water has been allocated, how we use the water... should not be dictated by the Board. Additionally, we are the upper riparian state and we will release water, but what happens if there is excess rain in Tamil Nadu? Where does that water go? There are no conditions imposed on them... We cannot discuss these matters in public...

First Published: Jun 19, 2018 22:40 IST