First time in Independent India, farmers are paying taxes: Rahul

October 21, 2022 09:35 pm | Updated October 22, 2022 11:45 am IST - RAICHUR

As part of Bharat Jodo Yatra, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi addressing a corner meeting at Yeragera in Raichur district on Friday.

As part of Bharat Jodo Yatra, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi addressing a corner meeting at Yeragera in Raichur district on Friday. | Photo Credit: Santosh Sagar

Training his guns on the Bharatiya Janata Party and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said that the farmers were forced to pay taxes for the first time in Independent India.

“Farmers are forced to pay 5% tax on fertilizers, 12% tax on tractors and 18% tax on pesticides. People are paying 90% tax on petrol and diesel. During my interaction with cotton farmers, I asked one of the farmers as to how much profit he had made in the last 10 years and he replied that in 7 years he incurred losses. When asked about Fasal Bhima Yojna which was meant for protecting farmers against crop loss, the farmers unanimously said that it was not a fraud. When I told them about the government scheme of waiving farm loans worth ₹70,000 crore, they said that they got ₹4 lakh of their loan waiver. I had to tell them that it was during the UPA [United Progressive Alliance] government and not during the BJP government. In fact, none of the farmers had got any loan waive scheme benefits in BJP government,” Mr. Gandhi said.

He was addressing a corner meeting at Yaragera in Raichur district on Friday. The meeting was organised as part of Bharat Jodo Yatra that Mr. Gandhi was leading for the last over 40 days.

Alleging BJP and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) of spreading hate and violence among the people of the country, Mr. Gandhi said that India was not a country of hate and violence and the country would get nothing from hate and violence.

Summing up his continued interaction with a wide range of working communities throughout the yatra, Mr. Gandhi said that the toiling masses of the country got nothing from the ruling BJP where as the super-rich businessmen got everything to grow richer and get featured in the list of richest individuals in the world.

“In Bharat Jodo Yatra, we walk for 6-7 hours a day meeting different sections of working people including youths, women, workers and farmers and listening to them. At the end, we speak for just 10 minutes. They are suffering from unemployment and poverty. On the other hand, rich businessmen are getting richer. A businessman rose to second position in the list of richest individual of the world. He became such a rich man as money flowed from the pockets of working people to his pocket,” Mr. Gandhi said in an oblivious reference to industrialist Gautam Adani.

Reminding the people of Kalyana Karnataka of the BJP’s rejection to accord Special Status to the region by inserting Article 371(J), Mr. Gandhi asserted that Congress had promised Article 371(J) and it fulfilled the promise.

“Because of Article 371(J), the people of Kalyana Karnataka got 40,000 jobs. Lakhs of students from the region got medical and engineering seats. The region got over ₹10,000 crore for infrastructure development. It is not a small achievement,” Mr. Gandhi said.

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