The Finance Minister, in his Budget Speech for 2008-2009, announced
a Debt Waiver and Debt Relief Scheme for farmers.
Guidelines for implementation of the Scheme are given below.
The Scheme will cover direct agricultural loans extended to marginal
and small farmers and other farmers by Scheduled Commercial Banks, Regional Rural Banks, Cooperative Credit Institutions including Urban Cooperative Banks and Local Area Banks hereinafter referred to compendiously as lending institutions as indicated in the Guidelines.
The Scheme shall come into force with immediate effect.
Direct Agricultural Loans means Short Term Production Loans and
Investment Loans provided directly to farmers for agricultural purposes. This would also include such loans provided directly to groups of individual farmers for example Self Help Groups and Joint Liability Groups , provided banks maintain disaggregated data of the loan extended to each farmer belonging to that group.
Short Term Production Loan means a loan given in connection with
the raising of crops which is to be repaid within 18 months. It will include working capital loan, not exceeding Rs. 1 lakh, for traditional and nontraditional plantations and horticulture.