Rajasthan Congress chief Sachin Pilot today demanded that the Vasundhara Raje-led BJP government in the state immediately waive the loans of farmers on the lines of relief provided to them in Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra. Farmers in Rajasthan have been protesting, seeking loan waivers and on other issues troubling them. They had blocked roads in Sikar last month demanding the implementation of the recommendations of the Swaminathan Committee, which suggested steps to provide relief to farmers across India. Earlier this month, more than 50 farmers buried themselves neck-deep in the ground against Jaipur Development Authority's move to acquire their land for a housing project. Pilot alleged today that Raje was waiting for the state assembly election due next year to announce the loan waiver. "Chief Minister Raje will have to waive loans of farmers in the state. CM is waiting for the proposed state assembly election to announce the waiver," he said. "Farmers of the state will not be able to wait for 12 months.
She should waive off loans of farmers without wasting any time," he told reporters at a joint press conference with Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala. The BJP government in Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra have announced schemes to waive loans of farmers in those states. Pilot also accused Raje of dividing the society by meeting representatives of different castes separately during her tour of the state. "It leaves a negative impact in the society." Hitting out against the infamous mining scam in Rajasthan, Pilot said that the Raje government had to cancel the lease of 600 mines because of the pressure mounted by the Congress party. But, he added, it was unfortunate that the government was making back-door attempts to renew the leases. He did not say what attempts he was referring to. Objecting to the reinstatement of a senior government officer accused in the scam, Pilot said that the government reinstated the officer even though a Lokayukta probe was pending against him.