In a tragic incident, a farmer died in his chair while attending BJP MP Jyotiraditya Scindia's public rally at Madhya Pradesh's Khandva district. The incident occurred while Scindia was giving a speech, with the BJP leader requesting the crowd to maintain one-minute silence in the memory of the farmer - Jeevan Singh, who is a resident of Chandpur. Rather surprisingly, Scindia proceeded to continue his speech after that and visuals from the rally show a person covering the farmer's face with a white cloth. The farmer is suspected to have died of a heart attack.
"An elder from Chanpura village named Jeevan Singh has died today. I request all of you to stand and maintain one-minute silence in his memory, praying for his soul's peace," said Scindia. He is then seen continuing his speech as the crowds continue to look at the farmer's body lying slumped in his chair. The State assembly's 28 seats will go to by-polls on November 3 and counting on November 10.
Meanwhile, the BJP has railed hard against the Kamal Nath government for not fulfilling its promise of farm loan waivers. On Saturday, Congress released a 'vachan patra' which promised to carry forward the farm loan waiver scheme implemented under the previous Kamal Nath dispensation if the party wins enough seats in the bypoll to come back to power. BJP has called it a lie, alleging that the previous Congress government gave this amount as NPAs to banks, issuing fake certificates of loan waiver to large number of farmers.
Incidentally, state Agriculture Minister Kamal Patel accepted that farmer loans have been waived in 51 districts in the state by the previous Kamal Nath government in the one-day Madhya Pradesh session on 23 September. As per reports, around loans up to one lakh rupees was waived off for 26 lakh farmers including -17,403 farmers in Guna, Bamori, Raghogarh, Madhusudangarh, Chachauda, Kumbhraj and Aron - which are up for by-polls. The two-phase farm loan waiver has covered all districts in the state, admitted BJP.
Former minister and sitting Congress MLA Dr Govind Singh stated, "it is clear from the Minister's reply that loans has been forgiven, but the BJP is only misleading the people. Loans upto Rs 2 lakhs have been waived off in my constituency." After filing the written reply, BJP minister Bhupendra Singh alleged that the information provided was incorrect and an investigation has been ordered into it. This admission also comes amid the passage of the three farm bills by the Modi government which has led to a widespread revolt by farmers.