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Tenant farmers toil as landlords get Rythu Bandhu scheme benefits

Tenant farmers toil as landlords get Rythu Bandhu scheme benefits
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Braving several adverse conditions, tenant farmers have tightened their belts to raise crops in the current kharif shelling down huge sums towards lease amount to the land lord on one hand spending from their pockets to raise crops in the leased lands on the other. 

Vikarabad: Braving several adverse conditions, tenant farmers have tightened their belts to raise crops in the current kharif shelling down huge sums towards lease amount to the land lord on one hand spending from their pockets to raise crops in the leased lands on the other.

They have to borrow money from money lenders in the absence of banks denial of crop loans to them. Under the Rythu Bandhu scheme, the land lords are cornering the input subsidy given by the government at the rate of Rs 4,000 per acre. There are no specific guidelines on payment of compensation to the tenant farmers in the event of natural calamities.

Also, the tenant farmers have no representation on the recently constituted farmers’ coordination committees. The government goes on record that it will come to the rescue of the tenant farmers, but it is handicapped in the absence of specific guidelines governing the tenant farmers.

Out of 8,000 tenant farmers in Vikarabad district, only 126 have loan eligibility cards. Other could not get the cards, in the absence of specific agreement on leasing out the land. Several landlords did not come forward to enter into agreements, as they are required to give a copy of the pattadar-passbook to the tenant farmers along with the lease agreement. At some places the tenant farmers did not take lands of the particular landlord on lease again, as the landlord did not come forward to share the input subsidy.

At some other places, the tenant farmers deducted the input subsidy and paid the rest of the lease amount to the land lord. At some places there were disputes between the landlord and the tenant farmers requiring arbitration. Officials are throwing off their hands out of helplessness in the absence of specific guidelines to render justice to the tenant farmers.

According to one of the farmers, the officials should document who are actually cultivating the lands at the grassroots level. There should be a strong machinery to document the ground realities. A tenant farmer who has been cultivating lands for the last 10 years, the compensation paid by the government four years ago for the withered away crops was cornered by the landlord, laments the tenant farmer. The tenant farmer who invested in lakhs sustained severe losses forcing to quit agriculture. There was no link between the sayings and doings of bureaucracy, he pointed out.

Another farmer demands the state government to take remedial measures. The tenant farmers are denied crop loans. Sometimes they have to shell down half of the lease amount and also foot the input costs of cultivating the land. To cultivate two acres, the tenant farmer requires at least Rs 1 lakh. If the crops withered away, the tenant farmer will land in debt crisis. Therefore, what is required is correct policy concerning the tenant farmers.

The officials say that they go by the government rules. In case of crop failure, compensation will be paid to the title holder. If the land lease agreement was registered in the presence of the VRO, the officials say that they will think over payment of compensation to the tenant farmer.

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