Friday, April 28, 2017
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Debt relief, not waiver, the way forward: Banks

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

CHANDIGARH: The Congress’ pre-poll promise of waiving agricultural loans, when translated into a figure, comes out to be Rs 62,931 crore.

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Debt relief, not waiver, the way forward: Banks

Ruchika M Khanna

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 27

The Congress’ pre-poll promise of waiving agricultural loans, when translated into a figure, comes out to be Rs 62,931 crore. The way ahead for the state government could be a debt relief rather than a debt waiver.

As a three-member expert group headed by Dr T Haque gets ready to meet here tomorrow (Friday), the state government and the State-Level Bankers’ Committee are ready with the monumental figures regarding the extent of farm loan.

The agricultural debt in Punjab is Rs 77,684 crore, out of which Rs 14,753 crore is the term loan. This means the working capital loan (taken from the public sector, and private, regional rural and cooperative banks) is Rs 62,931 crore, availed by 30.23 lakh farmers. The loan extended through Kisan Credit Cards is Rs 54,521 crore. The amount of loan availed from arhtiyas is still unknown.

The RBI has started a debt swap scheme, wherein farmers can swap up to Rs 1 lakh of debt raised from an arhtiya by availing a loan from a bank. Every year, 3 per cent of the agricultural credit is to be earmarked for the scheme.

In Punjab, the scheme has not cut much ice. Only 47 per cent of the target (Rs 718.75 crore of debt was swapped) could be achieved till December 2016.

Official sources say bankers have indicated that the only way forward for the state government is to take over the entire debt and clear dues of the banks. But the precarious health of the Punjab’s economy does not allow the state to take over such a huge debt burden — with the state’s outstanding public debt already more than Rs 1.78 lakh crore.

Sources say Punjab could adopt a pattern of debt relief similar to the one announced by UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath — though the limit of debt relief would be much higher than in Uttar Pradesh.

Dr Haque said during tomorrow’s meeting, experts would come up with ideas of how to go about the task entrusted on them. “We will also discuss the matter with some officers,” he added.

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Monopoly of pvt transporters to go

Monopoly of pvt transporters to go

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

CHANDIGARH: To end monopoly in the transport sector, Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has mooted an open-door policy for bus permits, except on national highway routes.

‘Pulwala’ Khanna bridged the gap

‘Pulwala’ Khanna bridged the gap

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

GURDASPUR: His constituents often referred Vinod Khanna as “pulwala Khanna”.

Gurdaspur seat to witness bypoll, race for ticket begins

Gurdaspur seat to witness bypoll, race for ticket begins

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

GURDASPUR/PATHANKOT: The death of four-time MP and Bollywood star Vinod Khanna has necessitated a byelection from the Gurdaspur parliamentary seat.

SAD ex-sarpanch among 9 held for drug peddling

SAD ex-sarpanch among 9 held for drug peddling

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

SANGRUR: The Crime Investigation Agency (CIA) of the Sangrur police arrested nine persons on the charge of drug peddling from Sunam last night.

BJP to back govt on SYL canal

BJP to back govt on SYL canal

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

CHANDIGARH: The state BJP today supported to the state government on the SYL issue.

AAP alleges police ‘excesses’

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

TARN TARAN: A district-level delegation of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) today submitted a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner (DC) and the district police against alleged police excesses being committed on party workers.

Opportunists targeting AAP, says Chhotepur

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

CHANDIGARH: Those speaking against AAP leaders now are a bunch of greedy people who wanted to grab power, which they couldn’t.

Politics, last 7 days...
Parents protesting fee hike booked in Jalandhar

Parents protesting fee hike booked in Jalandhar

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

JALANDHAR: Five activists of the Punjab Parents Association, including its president Kamaldeep Singh, have been booked by the city police for protesting against school fee hike.

18 injured as school bus overturns near Sangrur

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

SANGRUR: Fourteen students of a local private school and four teachers suffered injuries when the bus they were travelling in overturned near their school on the Thalesa road in this afternoon.

Farmers fined for burning stubble

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

FEROZEPUR: Acting tough on farmers setting their crop residue on fire, the district administration has issued challans to 14 erring farmers as per the instructions of the National Green Tribunal.

Akali Dal leader loses nagar panchayat post

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

MUKTSAR: The president of Bariwala nagar panchayat, Rajinder Gung of the Shiromani Akali Dal, was today removed from his post.

Now, lunch for Rs 10 in Barnala

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

BARNALA: The Barnala administration today started community kitchen in the ‘rain basera’ of the nagar council to provide lunch to the poor for Rs 10.

Biometric attendance at secretariat soon

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

The state government is all set to rein in babus arriving late at work with the installation of biometric attendance system at the Civil Secretariat and the Mini Secretariat.

Man detained, freed after villagers protest

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

HOSHIARPUR: Residents of Niazian and surrounding villages held a four hour long protest and blocked the main road today after the police rounded up a suspect in the assault on officials of the Century Plyboard factory managers yesterday.

IMA protests WB Act

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

HOSHIARPUR: All 65 local IMA branches under the IMA Punjab State Chapter observed the “National black day” today to protest the West Bengal Clinical Establishment Act, 2017, on a call given by the National IMA.

Ferozepur-Patti rail link hangs fire

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

AMRITSAR: The construction of the 25.47-km Ferozepur-Patti rail link, approved by then Railway Minister Pawan Kamar Bansal in the 2013 Rail Budget, could not be started for want of land, which is a state subject.

Bathinda refinery: Groups soften stand

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

Chandigarh: The transporters hired by the Bathinda-based Guru Gobind Singh Refinery and the transport union met on Thursday following the intervention of the district administration in a bid to resolve their standoff.

Workers allege unfair labour practices

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

Ropar: Leaders of the DCM Employees'' Union, Asron, held a press conference, alleged that the factory management was indulging in unfair labour practices and harassing employees for long.

Abohar farmers disrupt traffic

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

ABOHAR: Irked by poor electricity arrangements at Dutaranwali village purchase centre, dozens of farmers along with arhtiyas and labourers protested on the Seetogunno road on Wednesday afternoon.

Handcuffed youth flees; re-arrested

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

DASUYA (HOSHIARPUR): A youth arrested by the police in some loot and snatching incidents escaped from police custody while being taken to locate a co-accused.

Headmaster ends life

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

Abohar: The body of Jaswinder Singh (53) was found hanging from the ceiling fan in his room in Srikaranpur border segment in Sriganganagar on Thursday.

Fire engulfs resin factory

Fire engulfs resin factory

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

Hoshiarpur: A labourer sustained severe burn injuries when a fire broke out in a resin factory (pic) in the local Mohalla Bhawani Nagar on Thursday evening.

Community, last 7 days...

IAS officer Cheema sent to parent cadre

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

CHANDIGARH: The state government today repatriated West-Bengal-cadre IAS officer KJS Cheema to his parent cadre.

PAP company in Ropar to check gangs

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

CHANDIGARH: For the first time in the state, a company of the Punjab Armed Police (PAP) has been deployed to combat the menace of gangsters in Nurpur Bedi and a few nearby villages in Ropar district.

‘Abusive’ DEO: Minister orders probe

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

CHANDIGARH: Education Minister Aruna Chaudhary has ordered an inquiry into an incident in which a phone call of District Education Officer (DEO) Suresh Arora on private schools had gone viral on the social media in which uncouth language had been used.

Dharamsot seeks report on tree felling

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

CHANDIGARH: Forest and Wildlife Preservation Minister Sadhu Singh Dharamsot has taken a strong note of illegal felling of trees under the forest area of Siswan and Mirzapur villages in the periphery of Chandigarh.

Governance, last 7 days...

Jailbreak accused let off in explosives case

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

LUDHIANA: Nabha jailbreak case accused Harminder Singh Mintu, an alleged terrorist, was today acquitted in a case of recovery of explosive substances.

Complainant in Jagir Kaur case jailed for cheque bounce

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

JALANDHAR: Kamaljit Singh, who had lodged a complaint against former SGPC chief Bibi Jagir Kaur over her daughter’s death, was convicted in a cheque bounce case today.

Murder case: HC summons CBI officer over closure report

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

CHANDIGARH: Less than a month after the Punjab and Haryana High Court expressed its intention to examine whether the CBI’s action of submitting a closure report in a murder case — during the pendency of a petition before the Bench — amounted to contempt, Justice Rajan Gupta has summoned an SP of the investigating agency.

HC paves way for regular appointment of Agri Director

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

CHANDIGARH: Nearly 15 years after an order prevented the Punjab Government from appointing Director, Agriculture, on a regular basis, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has dismissed as “infructuous” the petition on which the direction came.

Courts, last 7 days...

Woman sexually abused by kin for two years

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

MOGA: A 21-year-old woman of Sukhanand village in Moga district, who is a student of nursing, was being sexually abused by a relative for the past two years on the pretext of marriage.

Doc held in abortion case

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

MUKTSAR: A joint team of the Health Department and police today nabbed a woman doctor for allegedly performing an abortion at her hospital in Malout.

UP man nabbed at border

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

FAZILKA: Personnel of 190 Battalion of the Border Security Force have nabbed an Uttar Pradesh resident Amar Nath Maurya (42) roaming under suspicious circumstances at the barbed wire fencing near border outpost Khanpur in the Fazilka sector at 2.30 pm on Thursday.

Toll plaza looted

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

Chamkaur Sahib: Two youths looted Rs 10,000 at gunpoint from the toll plaza here on Ropar road late on Wednesday night.

Crime, last 7 days...
No electricity, Gian Sagar students harassed

No electricity, Gian Sagar students harassed

28 Apr 2017 | 1:59 AM

PATIALA: With power supply disconnected for the past several days, students of Gian Sagar Medical, Dental and Nursing Colleges at Banur braving the heat and darkness is a daily ordeal.

Education, last 7 days...
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