Agriculture ministry: Farmers hit badly due to PM Modi’s demonetisation
The Union agriculture ministry has finally admitted that the farmers were badly hit due to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s unprecedented move of demonetisation.
Notably, the Union agriculture ministry admitted in a report that the PM Modi’s note ban badly affected the farmers. In a meeting of the Standing Committee of the Ministry of Finance, the Agriculture Ministry acknowledged that due to the lack of cash, millions of farmers were unable to purchase seeds and fertilisers ahead of the rabi season.
The agriculture ministry further informed that when note-ban was implemented, the farmers were either selling their kharif yield or sowing rabi crops. Note-ban rendered all the cash they had in hand useless. This drastically affected the farmers, said the agriculture ministry report, which discusses the effects of demonetisation.
The report further said that even government seeds could not be sold. “Demonetisation also affected big farmers as they had to pay wages to the labourers working on their fields. But they went cash-strapped after demonetisation,” the agriculture ministry report noted.
The ministry asserted that due to the shortage of cash, about 1.38 lakh quintals of wheat seeds of the national seed corporation were not sold.
In the standing committee meeting, the Opposition MPs criticised demonetisation and demanded that the government should provide data on the loss of employment in the micro, small and medium enterprises. The committee has 31 members including Congress stalwarts Veerappa Moily and former PM Manmohan Singh.
On 8 November 2016, PM Modi announced the demonetisation. Demonetisation had made 86 percent of existing currency in denominations of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 an illegal tender.
However, the Modi government has so far maintained that demonetisation was a necessary step to curb black money and a successful exercise.