Agriculture Minister Somireddy Chandramohan Reddy said on Friday that the government would soon give ₹8,000 crore towards the agriculture debt redemption scheme.
“This is as per the commitment of Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu to fulfil his promise of waiving farm loans amounting to ₹24,000 crore, of which ₹15,200 crore has already been waived,” he said.
Replying to a written question by the YSRCP MLAs, Kakani Govardhan Reddy, Y. Visweswara Reddy and B. Mutyala Naidu, on the quantum of farm loan waived in the Assembly, Mr. Chandramohan Reddy said that Mr. Naidu wanted to go to the elections only after waiving all the loans.
An expert committee had recommended that loans of up to ₹1 lakh be waived, but Mr. Naidu insisted that the amount be scaled up to ₹1.50 lakh to help the farmers in distress. Nearly ₹500 crore debt burden of the tenant farmers was also written off, he stated.
TDP MLA V. Subba Rao and BJP Floor leader P. Vishnu Kumar Raju sought constitution of a House committee to probe the allegations of illegal mining of laterite in East Godavari district and find the truth behind the allegations that bauxite was being extracted in the garb of laterite mining.
Raising a supplementary to a written question by TDP MLA S.V.S.N. Varma on illegal mining of laterite at Vanthada in East Godavari district in the Assembly, Mr. Raju said laterite was being taken out beyond the leasehold areas and there were reports that bauxite was being mined illegally due to lack of proper monitoring.
Mr. Subba Rao said the situation warranted the constitution of House committee to expose the racket.
Replying to the question, Minister for Mines and Geology Sujaya Krishna Ranga Rao said the laterite mining areas were under surveillance by the Mines and Geology and Vigilance and Enforcement departments. Besides, cooperation was being extended to the Income-Tax Department, which was investigating tax evasion and other irregularities thereof.
Mr. Ranga Rao said a total of 13 leases had been granted in Vanthada village and Girijanapuram and Lingamparthi reserve forests. Of them, four mines were found to be illegally operated. Three leases had been cancelled and a penalty of ₹2.50 lakh imposed in respect of the remaining one.