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Rs. 117 crore loan to stem grim harvest for Maharashtra

http://www.hindustantimes.com/news/181_1930858,000…Satyajit JoshiPune, February 17In another attempt to stem the bleak tide of farmer suicides in the state, the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has sanctioned a loan of Rs 117.17 crore to the state government for small irrigation projects in Vidarbha. This is part of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s package for debt-ridden farmers in Vidarbha announced in July last year. With this loan, sanctioned under the Centre’s Rural Infrastructure Development Fund (IRDF), 26 small irrigation projects in Vidarbha, which have been delayed due to lack of funds, are expected to be completed – translating into irrigation of over 15,000 hectares of land. Chief General Manager of NABARD, […]

No government on earth can subsidize 60 % farmers

http://farmdebt.blogspot.com/2007/02/no-government… Dr Sudhir Kumar Goyal, Divisional Commissioner, Relief, Amravati, in an interview, has said that immediate relief had been given to farmers where interest worth Rs 782 cores had been waived off. But the entire loan cannot be waived. “Subsidies are given. But no government on earth can give subsidy to 60% of its farmers.” The Vidarbha farmers have been given fresh loans, which Dr Goel said was three times more than in the past. This is called “singing a tune as per the ears of the listener“. This is a sure indication that Congress political bigwigs are beginning to wake up to the rural crisis in Vidarbha and are […]

Sorrow tale of Jajjal: the village cursed by cancer

http://www.countercurrents.org/en-dutt140207.htm By Umendra Dutt 14 February, 2007Countercurrents.org It is going to be five years that Jajjal village earned fame in media and administration. In 2002 when for the first time a retired government teacher Jarnail Singh bring out the issue of abnormally high incidences of cancer deaths in Jajjal and some adjoining villages. Till then village has witnessed about 20 cancer deaths and several new cancer cases. This small village has 500 odd households with population of 3500. There is no respite for the Jajjal residents. During last five years several experts and study teams from across the country visited the village, the surveys was done and stories were appeared […]

SEZs: Lessons from China

http://www.indiatogether.org/2007/feb/opi-sezschin… While single-minded pursuit of exports has helped China touch record growth figures, millions have been left behind, besides incurring huge environmental costs. And without even the limited dose of welfare that China offers its poor farmers, India must wary of copying China’s SEZ-approach, writes Bhaskar Goswami. 9 February 2007 – China’s record economic growth rate fuelled by the Special Economic Zones (SEZ) is often advocated as the reason for India to adopt this approach. Since the 1980s, China implemented a series of measures and policies with the sole purpose of achieving rapid economic growth. As evidence over the years has shown, this single-minded pursuit of growth has lowered the […]

Farmers have no hope from this budget too

http://www.business-standard.com/economy/storypage… Q&A: Kishor Tiwari Sreelatha Menon / New Delhi February 09, 2007 Kishor Tiwari of the Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti discusses the government’s apathy towards farmer suicides in an interview with Sreelatha Menon You were in Delhi to meet the finance minister? I did not get an appointment. I am told no one is serious in the government. There is also nothing in this Union Budget to stop farmers from dying. It is just rural infrastructure and not agriculture that the Budget is looking at. What brought you into this work? I am a professional. I did engineering in 1981 followed by an MBA from IIM Ahmedabad and then MTech. We […]

Struture of SEZ unlikely to be changed

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Structure_of_SE… MUMBAI: The Union Government on Thursday said it was unlikely that the basic structure of the SEZ policy would be changed and the Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) would meet after the Budget to bring more clarity to the existing policy. “The EGoM is going to meet again after the Budget. They may bring in some clarification. But, I don’t think that the basic structure of the rule is going to be changed,” Union Commerce Secretary G K Pillai, who is also the Chairman of the SEZ Board of Approval said. The UPA government has put a halt on agricultural land acquisition for industrial purposes following protests from different […]

Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) for SEZs

Dear friends As we all know the Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) for SEZs have in this month put a hold on SEZ approvals and are now considering reviewing/ammending the SEZ Act 2005. This is an opportunity for all people’s groups, NGOs, civil society members to come together and in one voice demand that this monsterous policy and law be scrapped immediately. Attached here is a Draft Memorandum to the Chairperson of the EGoM – SEZs demanding that ·        the SEZ Act 2005 be repealed to ensure industrial and economic development which is fair and democratic ·        the approved and notified SEZs be cancelled and land acquisitions already made be […]

Pushed to suicide

http://www.deccanherald.com/deccanherald/feb52007/… By Devinder Sharma Despite their contribution to the textile industry and the nation’s economy, cotton farmers have been betrayed. It is turning out to be as unreliable as the marriage vow: Till death do us apart. The new buzz on the economic horizon — public-private partnership — too is a marriage of convenience. The moment the dominant partner — private sector, in this case — finds the going tough, it leaves the public in a lurch. Genuine public-private partnership is not a new phenomenon. It actually began when the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP), then known as Agricultural Prices Commission (APC), drew up a unique model to […]

India's poor law

http://www.isvarmurti.com/2007/02/01/india’s-poor-… India’s poor politics, Hinders economic development. The Economist magazine, true to its verbal gymnastics, had called India’s much talked about employement guarantee programme (or just a promise on date?) as India’s poor law! In the same typical imperial mindset the magazine goes on to elaborate its wisdom as it see it. Of course what the Singh government is promising seems everyday becoming just hope! The budget’s first impression seems quite positive. On closer look there are some disquieting questions. The critics have ranged from known critics like S.Gurumurhty and theTN CM and some others. The budget doesnt give a specific agriculture development focus.What it gives as rural India development […]

Pawar reviews implementation of farmer suicide package

http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/0152007020218… New Delhi, Feb. 2 (PTI): In the backdrop of continuing reports of farmers suicides, Government today held detailed discussions on implementation of the Rs 16,000 crore package for states of Maharashtra, Kerala, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, which were hit by drought and floods last year. With the farmer suicides in Vidharbha still being reported, Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar during the meeting sought to know the progress of the package for farmers that included rescheduling of loans and low interest credit. The huge financial package, to be spread over a three year period, would include 31 most affected districts of the four states. The meeting expressed deep concern over the […]

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