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Punjab Elections: Now SAD-BJP Alliance Promises Farm Debt Waiver

After Congress and AAP promised to waive farm debt, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal on Saturday said SAD-BJP alliance will waive off farm debts of all small farmers if voted to power for the third consecutive time.

Press Trust Of India

Updated:January 21, 2017, 7:52 PM IST
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Punjab Elections: Now SAD-BJP Alliance Promises Farm Debt Waiver
A farmer plants saplings in a paddy field on the outskirts of Agartala, India, June 27, 2016. REUTERS/Jayanta Dey
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Tarn Taran: After Congress and AAP promised to waive farm debt, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal on Saturday said SAD-BJP alliance will waive off farm debts of all small farmers if voted to power for the third consecutive time.

Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir also promised to give bonus of Rs 100 per quintal on foodgrain and Rs two lakh agricultural crop loan to all farmers once it returned to power.

Addressing the gathering in favour of party candidate Harmeet Sandhu at village Chhabal and Ravinder Brahmpura at Khadoor Sahab, the SAD president said the alliance government would ensure adequate compensation to farm labourers in case of damage to farm crops.

Sukhbir said "we recognise the problems being faced by farmers. Accordingly we have come out with a complete package for farmers. We will waive off debt of all small farmers immediately after coming to power.

"Besides, we will give a state bonus of Rs 100 per quintal on both wheat and paddy crops which will be over and above the minimum support price (MSP) for both food grains. This will be a fertiliser input. Farmers will also be eligible for Rs 2 lakh interest free agricultural crop loan for every small farmer every year," he said.

The SAD president said the alliance was also committed to protecting the interests of farm labourers. He said the government would ensure 10 per cent calamity relief is distributed to farm labourers in case if any damage to farm crops.

Sukhbir also announced that the alliance would provide tube wells to all farmers on demand, irrespective of land holdings.

"We have distributed a few lakh new tube wells during our last term. Now we will further broad base this initiative," he said.

Stating that the SAD-BJP alliance would shortly announce a package for each and every section of society, Badal said "we are pro-Punjab and pro Punjabi" while accusing Congress of being the enemy of Punjab.

"It is responsible for sending tanks and artillery to the Harmandir Sahib as well as the genocide of Sikhs in 1984," he alleged.

He also lashed out at AAP, saying "it is an army of outsiders."

"Arvind Kejriwal wants to rule over Punjabis. Will you ever allow an outsider to rule over you ? This is the same person who betrayed Anna Hazare who brought him into the political limelight. He betrayed the founders of AAP. He betrayed the farmers of Punjab on the issue of SYL. How can you trust such a person," SAD chief asked.

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