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While the Shiv Sena today staged protests seeking disbursal of farm loan waiver before Dussehra, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis assured the leaders of the Uddhav Thackeray-led party that money will be deposited in the bank accounts of the cultivators by October first week.
A delegation of the Sena ministers met the chief minister and demanded that the process to disburse the loan waiver amount would start from September 21.
Uddhav Thackeray had instructed his party leaders and workers to stage protests against the state government over the issue from today.
Although the Sena ministers kept themselves away from the agitation for being part of the state government, the party MPs and MLAs led agitations in their respective constituencies.
Speaking to reporters at his Mantralaya office, Sena minister Ramdas Kadam, said his party had to stage state-wide demonstrations as the Opposition led by Congress and NCP had failed in its duty.
"Where the opposition fails, the Sena steps in," Kadam said.
Describing Devendra Fadnavis as a "sensitive" man, he added that the chief minister assured them that the first instalment of the relief amount will be deposited in the farmers' bank accounts by the first week of October.
Kadam said that the CM has assured them that the police cases registered against farmers, who had taken part in the statewide agitations earlier this year.
He said Fadnavis apprised them that the aim of the online registration process was to identify genuine farmers and weed out the ineligible ones, and to reduce the quantum of final loan waiver package.
He also said that even after 74 days of the announcement of the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Shetakari Sanman Yojana (the loan waiver scheme), not a single farmer has got its benefit so far.
"Hence, the farmers across the state are disappointed with the government. It was expected that the farmers will get benefit of the scheme during the Kharif season. But due to cumbersome format of the online form and difficulties in online submission, the actual implementation of the scheme has got delayed," he added.
Meanwhile, Revenue minister Chandrakant Patil said the disbursal of loan amount will begin in the last week of October.
Speaking to reporters in Kolhapur, Patil said, "Accounts of ten lakh bogus farmers and their verification is causing a delay in the loan waiver disbursement. The process will be completed by October end."
The scheme was announced on June 28 and Fadnavis had stated that 89 lakh farmers across the state will get the benefit of Rs 34,000 crore as loan waiver.