The Hindu: Mumbai: Alok Deshpande: Tuesday, March 7, 2017.
Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao, on the first day of the budget session of the legislature on Monday, stressed on the State government’s commitment to provide a clean and transparent administration. His statements come in the backdrop of the BJP highlighting transparency in the recently-held civic polls.
Addressing a joint session of the State legislature, Mr. Rao said, “To promote transparency and establish a regime of accessible information, my government has started an online RTI system and soon, all the offices at the districts of Maharashtra will be online RTI-compliant.”
He further said the government’s decision of direct cash transfers in Aadhar-linked bank accounts of beneficiaries, instead of procuring and supplying goods under welfare schemes, will offer a better choice to the beneficiaries.
He highlighted the initiatives under the Maharashtra Right to Public Service Act and announced formation of commission for the cause. “The government has drawn an ambitious plan of establishing by December 2018, a robust communication mechanism by connecting all 29,000 gram panchayats through optical fibre under Bharat Net Programme.”
“In order to mitigate the agrarian crisis and increase productivity, the government has initiated a slew of farmer-friendly measures in the form of development schemes, marketing support, crop insurance, water conservation, irrigation and agricultural diversification. All these measures will contribute to doubling the farmers’ income in the next five years.”
The opposition tried to disrupt the speech over the demand of loan waiver to farmers. Members of the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party raised slogans. On Sunday, the opposition had boycotted the tea party convened by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis as a mark of protest alleging the government failure to curb farmer suicides.
“Crop loan of ₹5,124 crore of 6.85 lakh farmers was restructured, enabling 4.39 lakh farmers to avail of a fresh loan of ₹3,276 crore. The government has decided to bear the entire interest on restructured loan for the first year and to levy only 6% interest for the remaining four years. The government has also decided to refinance nine District Central Cooperative Banks for restructured crop loan of ₹825 crore. Towards this, the government will pay ₹123 crore and has also extended guarantee to NABARD for ₹495 crore,” he said.