Chairman of RPG Enterprises Harsh Goenka got roasted on Twitter for a tweet, which he now says he made as a joke. In the tweet he appears to be making fun of the farm loan waiver announcements made by Congress state governments in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan.
This is what Goenka, who reportedly bought a five-bedroom sea-view apartment in Mumbai’s swish Malabar Hill area for ₹45.2 Crore, tweeted:
I need your urgent help and suggestions. I have two loans - one car loan and one home loan. Any idea how I can convert them to FARM loans?
The tweet received over nine thousand ‘likes’ and was retweeted two thousand and six hundred times. While many on Twitter took it lightly, there were several who felt outraged and pulled up Goenka for being insensitive and for making fun of farmers.
After getting trolled for over 24 hours, a chastened Goenka tweeted to say he was misunderstood.
“Didn’t mean to take a dig on the farmers. Misunderstood. Said in jest, at the loan waiver issue. Proud Indian and am concerned as to how we can get an immediate and sustained solution for agrarian distress and improving lives of farmers,” he tweeted on Thursday.
But before that, he was reminded that the farm loan waiver extended to amounts up to two lakh of Rupees. One chair or a sofa set in Mr Goenka’s house would cost as much, pointed out people while some wondered if he had a house or a car that together cost ₹2 lakhs.
Others enquired if his companies had ever availed of tax incentives and subsidies from the Government while some suggested he should either join the BJP or file for moral bankruptcy.
A few advised him to declare bankruptcy and convert his bank loans declared ‘Non Performing Assets’. One Twitter user wanted him to write to the Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley while a few advised him to get in touch with Congress President Rahul Gandhi. Some felt he should wait for the promised ₹15 lakh to each Indian by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
On a more serious note, a Twitter user wondered if he had hailed the farm loan waiver announced by the BJP Government in Uttar Pradesh as a ‘masterstroke’. Many admonished him and said that he should first lead the life of a farmer and feel his agony before making fun of loan waivers.