"I request the RBI to take measures to extend the moratorium on repayment (of crop loans) to December 2019," Rahul said in his letter to the RBI Governor.

Rahul Gandhi urges RBI to extend moratorium on Kerala farm loans in wake of floods
news Kerala Rains Thursday, August 15, 2019 - 07:56

Former Congress chief and Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi, in Wayanad on Wednesday, urged Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das for extension of moratorium on repayment of crop loans in Kerala in the wake of flood.

"I request the RBI to take measures to extend the moratorium on repayment (of crop loans) to December 2019. I would be grateful if I am informed of the action taken," Rahul, camping in his parliamentary constituency since Sunday, said in his letter to the RBI Governor.

The Congress leader said, the state-level bankers' committee has refused to consider the demand of the state government and the opposition parties to extend the moratorium on repayment of loans to December 31, 2019.

He said, in 2018 Kerala witnessed the worst flood in over a century, only to be followed by fresh floods this year, which destroyed crops as well as other productive assets of farmers. 

"Also, external factors, like the sharp fall in global commodity prices of cash crops, have adversely affected the farmer's capabilities," Rahul said.

The Congress leader also pointed to a spate of suicide by farmers in Kerala after banks intensified recovery proceedings against them under the Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Securities Interest Act, 2002 (SARFAESI Act).

As many as 95 people have lost their lives and over 1.89 lakh displaced due to floods this year in the state.

Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan on Wednesday announced that the government will provide a compensation of Rs 4 lakh to families who have lost 70% to 100% of their homes and Rs 10 lakh to families who have lost both their homes and their land, in the heavy rains and landslides that have hit the state.

“The cabinet has decided that an emergency relief aid of Rs 11,000 will be provided to all the affected families in the state. Along with this, the village officers of the various affected areas have been instructed to make a list of all the houses that have been partially and completely damaged,” the CM added.

Meanwhile, the Centre has also sanctioned Rs 52 crore as immediate assistance to the state. Announcing this, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan, also added that medicines worth Rs 4 crore will also be sent to Kerala.

With IANS inputs

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