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Maharashtra govt's Rs 10,000 crore relief to farmers inadequate, says NCP

Former Maharashtra deputy chief minister Pawar made the remarks after attending a meeting of NCP leaders convened by party president Sharad Pawar

NCP | BJP-Shiv Sena | farmers in India

Press Trust of India  |  Mumbai 

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The meeting took place a day after Pawar, a former Union agriculture minister, visited Nashik to assess crop losses.

The BJP and Shiv Sena should come together and form government to provide relief to farmers hit by untimely rains, leader Ajit Pawar said on Saturday even as he stressed his party will sit in the opposition.

Pawar also termed as "inadequate" the Rs 10,000 crore immediate assistance announced by the government for farmers affected by unseasonal rains.

Former Maharashtra deputy chief minister Pawar made the remarks after attending a meeting of leaders convened by party president Sharad Pawar here to discuss crop loss due to untimely rains in parts of the state.

The meeting took place a day after Pawar, a former Union agriculture minister, visited Nashik to assess crop losses.

Maharashtra chief Jayant Patil, party MPs Supriya Sule and Sunil Tatkare, senior leaders Chhagan Bhujbal, Dilip Walse-Patil and Dhananjay Munde attended the meeting held at the NCP supremo's residence here.

"They (BJP and Shiv Sena) should first come together and form government. They should not behave in a way that people will think those with majority (the two parties) are not bothered about the public," Ajit Pawar told reporters.

He said the NCP would not have waited for these many days to form government in case the grand alliance it is part of had secured majority.

"We do not have magic figure of 145. Hence, we have taken the decision of sitting in the opposition. We have prepared our mindset for that," he added.

Patil, who accompanied Ajit Pawar, said there was no discussion in the meeting about extending support to the Shiv Sena to form government in the state.

"We only discussed the wet drought and how to face it," he said, adding the NCP has the mandate to sit in the opposition.

Ajit Pawar further said the Rs 10,000-crore assistance declared by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis earlier in the day is "inadequate" and asked the government if it was "mocking" affected farmers.

He insisted that apart from increased assistance, farmers must also be provided crop loan waiver.

"Farmers commit suicide due to loan against their names. How many suicides is it going to take for the government to act?" he asked.

Patil said the NCP and Congress will call on Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari in a day or two to flag the concerns regarding wet drought in the state.

He also said the NCP has asked its district presidents to submit a report to the party on crop losses.

There is an impasse in the state over government formation, with no party or alliance having come forward as yet to stake claim.

The BJP won 105 seats in the polls followed by ally Sena (56), NCP (54) and Congress (44) in the 288-member Assembly.

The BJP and Shiv Sena, who contested the election together, however, have been bickering over the chief minister's post.

There was also speculation that the Shiv Sena may join hands with the NCP and form government with outside support from the Congress. Some state Congress leaders have said the party should back the Sena to keep the BJP out of power.

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First Published: Sat, November 02 2019. 20:15 IST