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Karnataka farm loan waiver: H D Kumaraswamy eyes Telangana model as Congress rules out PSU bank help

Newly elected Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy, who is heading Janata Dal (Secular)-Congress coalition government, faces a big dilemma. Gearing up on his promise to waive off farm loans, former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowdas son faces a tightrope walk after alliance partner Congress rejected the CMs plan to announce waiver of farm loans from nationalised banks. The Congress is learnt to have told the CM that the move could cause a Rs 42,000-crore dent to the exchequer, something that the party could not allow, The Indian Express reported. Complete waiver of all farm loans was a key issue during Karnataka election 2018. The JD(S) had promised complete waiver of all farm loans in the run-up to the May 12 elections. Even during the parleys between JD(S) and Congress top brass, farm loan waive featured as a key issue. Last year, after coming to power Yogi Adityanath-led BJP government in Uttar Pradesh had waived off the loans. Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis also followed the same path. Now, CM Kumaraswamy is mulling over the possibility of following the Telangana model to waive off loans. What is Telangana model? Kumaraswamy, who has stated that he was at mercy of Congress over the farm loan waiver matter as well as the Cabinet formation, has been pondering over ways to successfully implement the grand exercise that involves a hefty sum. As per the Telangana scheme, the state government repaid nationalised banks in a staggered manner. JD(S)-Congress leaders have said that the repayment by the Telangana government was done on the basis of guarantees from the RBI. In Telangana, Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao-led TRS government had waved off loans up to Rs 1 lakh, amounting to Rs 17,000 crore last year. States like Uttar Pradesh and Punjab had waived off farm loans, with budgetary provisions to account for the waiver. Maharashtra and Rajasthan governments waived loans without accounting for them in the state budget. In Karnataka, It is being worked out, an IE report said. Kumaraswamy is now planning to adopt a more calibrated approach. Siddaramaiah-led Congress government had announced waiver of farm loans of up to Rs 50,000, taken from cooperative banks, which amounted to a total Rs 8,000 crore. Questions have also been raised on whether poor farmers\u201d