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Sudurpaschim Government Halts Interest Subsidy Payments to Farmers

२०८१ जेठ १४, ०४:०१ Dineshkhabar Desk

Dhangadhi– The Sudurpaschim provincial government has halted the disbursement of interest subsidy payments to farmers, citing the absence of a Minister of Economic Affairs. This interruption has affected the subsidies farmers receive on agricultural loans and insurance premiums, as outlined in the Agriculture and Livestock Business Promotion Regulations 2079.

The state government has been providing an 8 percent subsidy on agricultural loan interest to farmers, agricultural cooperatives, and agricultural groups to promote the commercialization and modernization of agriculture and livestock.

However, payments amounting to approximately NPR 20 million have been suspended since Paush. Since 2078, farmers receiving these subsidies through the Agricultural Knowledge Center and Veterinary Hospital and Animal Services Expert Center have seen their payments halted.

The Chief Minister, Dirgha Bahadur Sodari, who assumed office following the collapse of the previous government led by Kamal Bahadur Shah, has not expanded his cabinet, leaving the Ministry of Economic Affairs under his direct control. The subsidy payment files are currently pending his approval.

The impact of this suspension is widespread. In Sudurpaschim, there are nine Agricultural Knowledge Centers and nine Veterinary Hospitals and Animal Service Expert Centers. The disruption has been particularly notable in Kailali district, where the Agricultural Knowledge Center and Veterinary Hospital and Animal Services Expert Center have been unable to process payments.

Khagendra Prasad Sharma, recently transferred head of the Krishi Gyan Kendra, reported that his request for NPR 1 million in insurance premium payments could not be approved. Dr. Hemraj, head of the Veterinary Hospital and Animal Services Expert Center, noted that while NPR 10 million has been allocated for interest subsidies this fiscal year, an additional NPR 18 million is needed to meet demand.

Despite presenting the Government's Appropriation Bill 2081 for the next financial year to the Provincial Assembly on Sunday, where he emphasized making agricultural loan interest subsidies effective, Chief Minister Sodari's inaction has led to frustration among farmers.

They argue that the current freeze on payments has discouraged agricultural activity, contrary to the government's stated priorities. Farmers in Sudurpaschim continue to await resolution, hoping for swift action from the government to restore the much-needed financial support critical for their agricultural operations.

Dineshkhabar Desk

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