CM urged the bankers to provide loans to small and marginal farmers on a lower rate of interest for agriculture as well as other allied professions. 13-02-2015
Chandigarh February 13: Haryana Chief Minister Mr Manohar Lal has urged the bankers to provide loans to small and marginal farmers on a lower rate of interest for agriculture as well as other allied professions like dairy farming, fisheries, poultry etc. The scenario has changed after the formation of BJP Government in the State leading to record recovery of Rs 200 crore in the past three months by the Cooperative Banks. The Chief Minister was addressing the 131st State Level Bankers’ Committee (SLBC) Meeting of Haryana here today. It may be recalled that Mr Manohar Lal is the first Chief Minister to attend SLBC after a span of last ten years. On this occasion, he released a booklet on ACP 2015-16 and first edition of SLBC quarterly news letter. He also went around the stalls put up on various concepts. He said that land holdings have been shrinking. Haryana has a total of 16.17 lakh land holdings out of which small and marginal holdings are about 11 lakh which constitutes 70 per cent of the total land holdings. The small and marginal farmers always have limited resources for growing crops. Hence, it was necessary to provid them loans on low rate of interest for other agri related businesses also so as to increase their income. His government has provided a financial assistance of Rs 100 crore to Cooperative Agriculture Banks and Rural Development Banks so that these institutions could provide maximum loans, he added. ‘I am quite concerned about the problem of loan recovery’ said Mr Manohar Lal adding that efforts were being made by the government to change this scenario so as to increase the recovery of commercial banks. Recovery is necessary for the smooth functioning of banks, he added. The SLBC launches bankable credit potential estimates of Rs 89,049 crore under priority sector lending in Haryana for the Financial Year 2015-16 showing growth of 14 per cent over the State Credit Plan for the current year. The Chief Minister asked the banks to further increase the growth rate to 20 per cent so as to ensure the speedy development of the State. While underlining the need of better banking system for the rapid development in this era of open economy, he urged the banks to open more bank branches in the villages which is 2228 at present so that maximum facilities could be provided to the people at the grass root level. Haryana has a total of 4158 branches of Commercial and Rural Regional Banks. He said presently there are 1,984 Business Correspondent Agents (BCAs) in the State and urged the banks to increase this number. The government has decided to disburse the increased Old Age Pension of February paid in the month of March through Banks. Lauding the role of banks, the Chief Minister said that it was a matter of pride that the Indian Banking System is among one of the big banking networks of the world. The Indian banks of both commercial and private sector have not only dominated the domestic market but also strongly competing in the global market. He said that geographical condition coupled with demographic advantage of the State is conducive to development and added that the economic development of the State depends largely on agriculture and industrialization. He said that the growth rate of agriculture in the country has been constant for the last many years which is 3.43 per cent. It was necessary to bring a structural change in the agriculture economy to increase this growth rate. Agriculture production has been increased as a result of green revolution and agriculture technology has also been improved. We are encouraging farmers to adopt dairy farming and cultivation of fruits, vegetables, flowers and medicinal plants. Apart from this, the government has decided to provide 50 per cent subsidy to farmers on setting up of mini dairies of cows of indigenous breed which was 25 per cent earlier. To promote rearing of Sahiwal and Gir Breed of cows, the State government has decided to start a scheme from next financial year under which incentive ranging from Rs 10,000 to 20,000 would be given to the cattle owners. The Chief Minister said that the State Government is going to implement its new Industrial Policy by March 2015 and under this, special emphasis would be given on the setting up of small and agro based industries. He urged the banks to provide maximum loan facilities to small and agro based industries as this would not only increase the growth rate but over all development of the State would also be ensured. He said that he wanted to make Haryana as a Model State for the country and also the leading State to achieve the national target of Make in India. For this, he said that there was a need that the banks and the government work in tandem. He urged the banks to become a partner in the development process of the State and provide institutional loans and other facilities for projects and other financial activities. Speaking on this occasion, Chairman SLBC Mr Gauri Shankar said that though the government targeted January 25, 2015 for saturation under Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) by opening accounts of all households but the banks in cooperation and support from State Government achieved saturation on December 22, 2014 much ahead of scheduled time. He said that banks have extended education loans amounting to Rs 1227.41 crores to as many as 44,885 students in the State till December 2014. Weaker section advances have gone up from Rs 16546 crore as at December 2013 to Rs 19851 crore as at December 2014 thereby registered a growth of 19.97 per cent, he added. He said that Commercial and Regional Rural Banks have opened 453 new branches during the period from January 1, 2014 to December 31, 2014 thus raising the total number of bank branches to 4158. Apart from this, 420 new ATMs have been installed taking to their total number to 5665. Deputy Secretary, Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance Mr Gulab Singh urged the bankers to ensure the timely disbursement of education loans for the benefit of students. Deputy Director General, UIDAI Mrs Keshni Anand Arora, Principal Secretary Finance Mr P.K Das, Chief General Manager, NABARD Dr D.V Deshpande, Regional Director, RBI Mrs Rashmi Fauzdar and Convener of State Level Bankers Committee Mr B.M Padha also spoke on this occasion. Those other present on this occasion included senior officers of the State Government and Controlling Heads of the Banks operating in the State.