12-07-201912-07-2019 13:46:50 IST
2019-07-12T08:16:50.810Z12-07-2019 2019-07-12T08:16:47.506Z - - 10-04-2020
With both the ruling YSR Congress Party and the TDP refusing to yield any ground, the heated debate on the issue of interest-free loans to farmers spilled over to the second day of Andhra Pradesh Assembly budget sessions on Friday. Coming ahead of the YSRCP government’s first-ever Budget presentation by Finance Minister B Rajendranath Reddy, members from the treasury and opposition benches crossed swords right from the start of the day. As is their won't, the ruling YSRCP blamed the TDP for its non-fulfillment and the TDP claimed credit for payouts in full during its tenure.
Claims and counter-claims on the floor of the House on an issue, as sensitive as farm loans, have only heightened the confusion on who to trust. Unruly scenes were witnessed in the midst of a shouting match between the two sides when Leader of the House Y S Jaganmohan Reddy began rebutting the TDP’s and its leader Chandrababu Naidu’s claims of having fulfilled the scheme in letter and spirit.
Chief Minister Y S Jaganmohan Reddy, speaking on an adjournment motion moved by the TDP, asserted that his government is ready to bust the opposition party’s ‘false claims’ based on hard facts. Holding firm on the charges he made on Thursday, he once again accused the previous TDP government of duping the farmers in giving out interest-free loans to the farmers. Using the year-wise data displayed on the big screen in the House, Jagan said that the previous TDP government led by Chandrababu Naidu had only paid Rs 630 crores during its five-year term. “This is not even 5 percent of the total Rs 11,600 crores that were supposed to have been paid to the farmers. And still, Chandrababu Naidu and his TDP members have the gumption to claim that they had paid the interest in full. This is as preposterous as equating Rs 2 with Rs 100. We have all the hard facts to bust Naidu’s game of deception and how he duped farmers to the tune of Rs 11,000 crores,” Jagan commented.
In a counter-attack on Thursday, Chandrababu Naidu and his TDP members released their own data to buttress their claim of having implemented the scheme during their rule. Naidu claimed that all dues were cleared relating to the zero-interest loans of the scheme that was originally introduced by the Kiran Kumar Reddy-led Congress government. He said a total of Rs 979.45 crores were paid pertaining to the period from 2013-14 to 2015-16. “Approximately Rs 507 crores were pending for the year 2017-18 and the claims for the year 2018-19 were yet to be received,” as read out from their documents.
Even if these payout figures are assumed as accurate, the total amount that the TDP claims to have paid intriguingly falls way short of the Rs 11,600 crores, as listed out by Chief Minister Y S Jaganmohan Reddy. Also, the TDP was mum on the total estimated amount and the outstanding dues for the scheme during its entire tenure..!
When two political parties – one just in power and the other just out of it – fight it out with respective claims and weave a web of intricate details around them, filtering the truth is always a challenge. The parties may have their own compulsions amidst high political stakes. But the people cannot always be taken for a ride as they are far more discerning and can see through the smokescreens sooner or later..!
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