Financial aid given to hailstorm hit farmers, says Prithviraj Chavan

Refuting allegations of not rendering help to hailstorm affected farmers, Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan today said the state government has disbursed financial aid to them.

Prithviraj ChavanMaharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan. File Pic

"It is not that we haven't helped farmers. People are saying that we did not help the farmers on time, but that is not true. We have provided all possible help to the farmers," Chavan told reporters on the occasion of Maharashtra Day celebration at the Mumbai Mayor's bungalow.

He said he had never heard of any other state managing to get financial aid in such a short time.

"Even while the code of conduct was in force, we asked for help from Union agriculture minister and the Central government. I have never heard of any other state asking and receiving help in such a short period of time," he claimed.

Chavan said he has stood behind the farmers of the state to help them, whatever the situation may be. Commenting on Indian Meteorological Department's forecast of a less than normal monsoon in parts of Maharashtra, the senior Congress leader said the government has taken stock of the possibility of a poor monsoon. "We have got information from the meteorological department that it might rain less this year.

We have thought of what help needs to be given to farmers," he said. "We have informed the district collectors about the possibility of low rains this year and have given them instructions on what needs to be done. Also, wherever there is drought, we have provided tankers and water," he said.

He dismissed reports of a huge police force being deployed at the state secretariat 'Mantralaya' to operate telephone calls.

"This process (deployment of security) is being followed for many days. But it is not that a large number of policemen are being deployed at Mantralaya for security duty. Minimum force has been deployed there and we keep on reviewing security arrangements to further bring down the security," Chavan said.

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