Sun, 16 Apr 2017
50 rich industrialists given Rs. 1,40,000 crore debt waiver, then why disrespect poor TN farmers, Rahul Gandhi asks PM Modi
NEW DELHI: Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi accused Prime
Minister Narendra Modi of “disrespecting” the droughthit farmers of Tamil Nadu
by not initiating talks with them over their demands for relief package. He
made the remarks during a visit to Jantar Mantar on 31st March, 2017 to express
solidarity with the farmers from the southern state who are camping here for
the 18th day in a row.
Shri Rahul Gandhi also accused the Modi-led government of being
“anti-poor and anti-farmer” which, he alleged, only ponders to the demands of a
select group of industrialists. “The farmers have been sitting here for so
long. But neither the government nor the Prime Minister are listening to them.
The people and farmers of Tamil Nadu deserve to be heard by the Prime Minister
who is disrespecting them by not initiating any dialogue,” he said.
“Over the last three years, debt worth Rs 1.4 lakh crore
held by 50 industrialists have been written off. “Why the same is not being
done in case of the farmers? Why are their debts not being waived? It is the
Prime Minister’s responsibility to do so,” Congress Vice President Shri Rahul
Gandhi said after interacting with the protesters and their leader Shri P.
During the interaction, he took note of all the demands of the
protesters and assured them that the Congress will “fight for them” and raise
their grievances “in Tamil Nadu as well as in Delhi and the Parliament”. The
Centre needs to provide debt waiver, drought relief and enhanced support price
to the farmers. Also the Prime Minister should at least start talks with them,
Shri Gandhi said.
He was accompanied by Tamil Nadu Congress President Su. Thirunavukkarasar
and senior party leader Mani Shankar Aiyar. Farmers belonging to the Cauvery
belt in Tamil Nadu are protesting here demanding a drought relief package of Rs
40,000 crore from the Centre, farm loan waiver and setting up of Cauvery
The protesters wore ‘rudhraksha’ (seeds traditionally used
for prayer beads) indicating a life of saints who has given up all earthly
needs. “We will die at the national capital instead of returning to our state
empty-handed,” Shri Ayyakkannu said. It has not rained and ground water levels
have gone down at many places in the state. The water bodies are also drying in
the region. The poor farmers, who depend on water for their crops, are the most
vulnerable section of the society and they always become victims of various