Amid devastating floods that have ravaged the state of Kerala over the past week, former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi has written to Shaktikanta Das, the RBI governor, seeking an extension on the time period for repayment of crop loans of farmers in the state to 31 December 2019, in the wake of the disastrous effects of the heavy downpour for the second consecutive year.
The MP from Wayanad constituency penned a letter to the RBI governor, seeking an extension in the time frame given for the farmers in the state to repay the loans availed from the banks owing to the present condition of the state that has been destroyed by floods. The Congress leader said that the farmers in Kerala faced wide-spread crop loss and extensive damage to other productive assets. He further cited a sharp fall in the global commodity prices of cash crops had not allowed the farmers to bounce back.
The former Congress chief also stated that the number of farmer suicides in the state was increasing after the banks initiated recovery proceedings under the Secularisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Securities Interest Act 2002 (SARFAESI Act). Gandhi claimed that despite the state government and the opposition parties making a plea to the State Level Banker's Committee to extend the repayment duration, they did not receive a positive response and hence requested the RBI governor to intervene and bring relief to the farmers of the state.
Here is the letter penned by Rahul Gandhi:
Gandhi, who visited areas ravaged by floods and landslides in his constituency, posted an appeal on his Facebook page."My Parliamentary constituency Wayanad has been devastated by floods with thousands left homeless and shifted to relief camps", Gandhi said.
"We are in urgent need of materials, including water bottles, sleeping mats, blankets, undergarments, dhothis, nightgowns, children's apparel, slippers, sanitary napkins, soaps, toothbrushes, toothpaste, Dettol, soap powder, bleaching powder and chlroine," he said.
He also urged people to give biscuits, sugar, green gram, dal, black gram, coconut oil, coconuts, vegetables, curry powders, bread and baby food to the affected people. Gandhi appealed to donors to send the material to collection centres in Malappuram district, which he listed.