Worshiped In Farmers' Hearts

  • Farmers suffered due to
    lack of assistance and support
  • YSR observed the sad situation
    of farmers during Praja Prasthanam
  • Aid to farmers soon after
    coming to power
  • Revolutionary decisions
    like free electricity provision and loan waiver
  • Agriculture celebrated
    under YSR’s rule

Villages are the backbone of the
country. Particularly, for the state of AP, being an agriculture-dependent
state to be flourished, the financial system in the villages should be strong
and the farmers should be happy. The basic needs of a common man, something to
eat, a place to stay, clothes to wear, healthcare, education for children and
financial security in the old age are very important.


Until YSR took up power in 2004,
he did not care about farmers. Chandrababu acted as if agriculture was a waste
of time. Already hit by drought, farmers suffered from unavailability of
irrigation water. The Government, instead of caring for the situation,
neglected it. Farmers, as a result, resorted to suicide. Even that could not
move the Government veterans. 

Observation during Praja Prasthanam

At that time, Dr.YS Rajasekhar Reddy, being the leader of
opposition of that time, toured in the whole state. Praja Prasthanam programme
began in Chevella of Rangareddy district and went on till Icchapuram of
Srikakulam district in spite of hot sun. As he went marching through the
villages, people revealed to him their problems. They complained about the
Government’s negligence towards their issues. YSR thought about how to let them
out of the crisis situation. He announced that he would provide electricity for
free as soon as he came to power, so that they could draw irrigation water with
motor pipes. Chandrababu mocked this too.

Agriculture given utmost importance

After he came to power, YSR put his attention on the field of
agriculture. The first signature he did was on the file that had orders
allowing provision of free electricity as promised. This was immediately
implemented throughout the state. In reality, major part of the farming in the
state was dependent on groundwater but not water from water projects.
Cultivation in one acre provided livelihood for almost 50-60 people and income
of Rs.4000-6000 for the Government. If bores did not work or the farmers could
not spend on electricity, the Government did not even provide assistance to
them. But after YSR came to power, he provided power for free, as YSR
envisioned that this would improve the production of grains, thereby improving
the financial strength of rural areas. YSR also waived the Rs.1269 crore
electrical bills piled up until then. He promised to provide 7 hours of free
electricity until the day he died. Overall, 30 lakh pumps had free provision of
power. Totally, 1500 crore units of power was supplied and lakhs of acres of
farmland was kept flourished.

Waiver of agricultural loans

YSR decided to come to the aid of the farmers in distress by cancelling
agricultural loans. 64 lakh farmers were benefited from this. Almost Rs.11,000
crore was waived. Also, Rs.5000 gift money was announced for those farmers who
paid their loans early. With this, 36 lakh farmers were benefited. Rs.1800
crore were given away among the farmers.

Financial assurance

Finding money for investment was a huge problem for farmers of
rural areas. They used to look for sources at the beginning of every season.
YSR decided to ease the regulations related to sanction crop loans. Loans were
also sanctioned for 0.25% rate of interest. Totally, Rs.22,650 crore of loans
were given at this rate. Encouragement was also given to those who paid their
loans early. 

to related areas

The areas related to agricultural sectors were also encouraged by
YSR. Pasukranthi scheme was introduced for the purchase of cattle. Loans were
sanctioned at 0.25% interest. Subsidy was announced to be Rs.30,000. Hence,
cattle were bought extensively. Insurance for sheep was introduced for the
first time in the country. 

With the overall development of
agriculture and rural areas, YSR did equal justice all areas and all social
classes. With no new tax, he managed the agricultural sector so efficiently
that intellectuals, even today, express their opinion that the state of AP
would be in a much better situation if YSR was alive. 


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