Farmers protest after arrest warrants served for non-payment of loans
The bank's move came despite the Kumaraswamy led Congress-JDS coalition government announcing about Rs 45,000 crore farm loan waiver recently
Protests by farmers against a private bank erupted in many parts of Karnataka Monday after arrest warrants were served on some of them for non-repayment of loans, prompting Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy to direct the officials concerned to resolve the issue at the earliest. The protests broke out after reports emerged that several farmers in Belagavi district were served arrest warrants by a court for non-repayment of loans. The bank's move came despite the Kumaraswamy led Congress-JDS coalition government announcing about Rs 45,000 crore farm loan waiver recently.
The chief minister's office said in a statement that the BelagaviDistrict Deputy Commissioner and senior police officials, acting on a directive by Kumaraswamy, have convened a meeting between bank officials and farmers on November 7 to resolve the issue. "The Chief Minister has asked the district administration to discuss farmers' issues with the bank officials at the meeting and in a friendly atmosphere resolve the issue in a way that farmers are not affected," it added. The bank said farmers' interests were of "utmost priority" and it would work with the state government to resolve the matter. In a statement, the bank said it had extended various credit facilities to farmers who had borrowed money for their agricultural or farm-related activities. It said legal proceedings were initiated almost six months ago after some farmers failed to repay their loans.
"The bank has also been working towards an amicable loan repayment process through a one-time settlement schedule and would like to encourage farmers to avail this opportunity," it said, quoting its Regional branch Banking Head, South, Sadashiva Mallya. The bank said it was aware of the state government's notification on the loan waiver scheme and it would align with the directives of the state government and the state-level Bankers Committee on the matter. "Needless to say, the interests of farmers are of utmost priority and the bank will work with the government of Karnataka to resolve the matter in the best interests of all parties concerned, it said.
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