There is good news for farmers in Maharashtra. Those who are yet to receive funds from cooperative banks can now expect them from commercial banks. Soon, there will be a move to help regional rural banks (RRBs) use the infrastructure of primary agriculture cooperative societies, which would disburse crop loans from commercial banks.
This apart, district central cooperative banks (DCCBs) would, in a bid to ensure availability of crop loans from commercial banks, function as business correspondents of the Maharashtra State Cooperative Bank.
These crucial decisions were taken today at a state-level bankers’ committee meeting chaired by chief minister Prithviraj Chavan.
Further, the commercial banks called upon the government to review the recovery of stamp duty on loan for amounts exceeding Rs 1 lakh granted for agriculture-allied activities in the state. Chavan told the bankers to seriously look into the issue. Currently, as per the government resolution issued in 1990, stamp duty is exempted only for loans worth Rs 10,000 granted for agriculture-allied activities.
- Farmers who are yet to receive funds from cooperative banks can now expect them to come from commercial banks
- There are plans to help regional rural banks use the infrastructure of primary agriculture cooperative societies that would disburse crop loans from commercial banks
- District central cooperative banks would function as business correspondents of the Maharashtra State Cooperative Bank to ensure availability of crop loans from commercial banks
- Commercial banks called for review of the recovery of stamp duty on loan for amounts exceeding ~ 1 lakh granted for agriculture-allied activities
After the meeting, state cooperation minister Harshvardhan Patil said the committee has fixed a crop loan target of Rs 25,000 crore for 2012-13. Of this, nearly 55 per cent would come from the commercial banks, 35 per cent from the cooperative banks and the rest from the RRBs, he told Business Standard.
“There has been almost a rise of Rs 5,000 crore in the crop loan target compared to 2011-12. The government’s efforts to increase the share of commercial banks has paid off, as it used to be 30 per cent, while cooperative banks used to provide nearly 70 per cent till recently,” Patil recalled. “However, since last year the commercial bank’s share has started rising. They crossed 45 per cent in 2011-12.”
He informed that in Dhule, Osmanabad, Nandurbar, Jalna, Buldhana and Wardha districts where the DCCBs have been under liquidation, the commercial banks have agreed to provide loans directly. Of the Rs 1,430 crore, so far Rs 750 crore have been disbursed by the cooperative banks, while the balance Rs 680 crore would be provided by the commercial banks in the six districts.
Patil informed that the government would lend support to the commercial banks so that farmers got the loan at the earliest. “The district lead banks have been asked to initiate the necessary work. They will be helped by RRBs using the infrastructure of primary agriculture cooperative societies and those banks under liquidation as the business correspondents,” he said.
Bank of Maharashtra, which had prepared the presentation for today’s meeting, informed that production credit requirement for 2012-13 has been estimated at Rs 37,895.98 crore. The bank made a strong case for the establishment of integrated marketing system to avoid exploitation by the middlemen. According to the bank, the system should consist of scientific harvesting and collection of farmers’ produce at all collection centres, scientific grading and standardisation besides improved and innovative marketing and finance.