Give flood-hit Kerala farmers more time to repay loans: Rahul to RBI chief

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on August 14, 2019 Published on August 14, 2019

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi interacts with those affected by floods and landslides, at Kalpetta in Wayanad, on Tuesday   -  PTI

Citing unprecedented floods in Kerala, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has urged RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das to extend the moratorium on repayment of farm loans till December 31. He said the Kerala government and the Opposition had made this demand earlier.

The Wayanad MP who visited his constituency which was ravaged by rain and landslides, said in a letter to Das that the State has witnessed the worst floods in over a century. The devastating impact of the deluge is further compounded by the inability of farmers to repay agriculture loans on account of widespread crop loss, and extensive damage to other productive assets.

“External factors such as the sharp fall in global prices of cash crops has also adversely affected the ability of farmers to bounce back,” he said.

“Kerala has witnessed a tragic spate of farmer suicides in the aftermath of banks initiating recovery proceedings against helpless farmers under the SARFAESI Act,” he said in the letter.

He said despite the demand from the State government and the Opposition, the State’s committee of bankers refused to extend the moratorium to December 31. “I request the RBI to take measures to extend the moratorium on repayment to December 31, 2019,” he said.

Published on August 14, 2019
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