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Start long-term measures to tackle scarcity : NCP chief

NCP chief and former Union minister Sharad Pawar on Thursday observed that the scarcity situation in various parts of the state including the Marathwada region is grim and urged the state government to start long-term measures on priority to tackle the situation. 

Start long-term measures to tackle scarcity : NCP chief

Addressing a news conference here this evening, he said that severe scarcity of water has emerged all over the state in October and expressed fear about what will happen in the months to come. The former Agriculture minister suggested that the state government should take urgent steps to overcome the situation like providing drinking water to affected villages, fodder camps for cattle and long-term planning to supply drinking water to scarcity-affected areas.

He said that the state government was only giving promises but was not serious about handling the situation, he claimed. "In this regard, I will meet the state government and will apprise them about the scarcity situation prevailing in the state, particularly Marathwada and very soon I will also meet concerned department officials in New Delhi," he said.

In such severe situation, the government should declare drought in the entire Marathwada region and also in other affected parts of the state voluntarily instead of waiting for the central government clearance, Mr. Pawar said and appealed to all to not play politics over such a situation. He called for saving horticulture on a war footing because if the orchards are ruined the producers may suffer heavy losses in the next several years.

Mr. Pawar demanded that the state government should order to all the concerned departments to stop all kinds of recovery from affected farmers and give waiver in their children's school fees as well in their electricity bills among others. Talking about the loan waiver scheme implemented by the state government, the NCP chief claimed that still many farmers were deprived of the benefits of the scheme.

The former Agriculture minister said that the previous UPA government had waived off loans worth Rs 71,000 crore and claimed that the state government's introduction of the online system to apply for loan waiver has totally failed, he added.

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