Hyderabad: Andhra Pradesh chief minister N. Chandrababu Naidu on Wednesday alleged that the central government did not cooperate with the state in the implementation of its farm loan waiver scheme.

Andhra Pradesh has so far paid 24,000 crore, including 15,147 crore of farm loans and 10% annual interest, to more than 5.8 million farmers as part of its debt redemption plan, the chief minister said.

“The central government failed to extend its cooperation to AP for implementing the farm loan waiver scheme. The agriculture and allied sectors in Andhra Pradesh have registered 11% average growth rate for the past four-and-a-half years, despite deficit rainfall, against the 2.4% growth at an all-India level. The state has given top priority for agriculture and spent 82,000 crore in the last five years to boost the economy," Naidu said during the release of a ‘white paper’ on agricultural growth.

The chief minister said Andhra Pradesh had faced a severe crisis in agriculture during 2014, with Anantapur district experiencing drought for the last two decades. The government then allotted a major chunk of its budget towards the sector and doubled the income of farmers in the past four years, he said.

“The Andhra Pradesh government allotted 19,070 crore for agriculture during the 2018-19 budget. A mega seed park will come up on 650 acres at Tangadencha agricultural farm in Kurnool district in collaboration with Iowa State University at a cost of 670 crore. It will distribute quality seeds to the entire nation," announced Naidu.

The state also disbursed loans to the tune of 9,411 crore to 2.5 million tenant farmers to protect their interests, he said.

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