ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY CRORE RUPEES FOR BANKS TOWARDS INTEREST REFUND THIS YEAR
Benefits for banks offering crop loans at 6 per cent p.a.
Mumbai (Reporter): This year, the state government will be paying one hundred and fifty crore rupees to the cooperative, rural, nationalized and commercial banks in the state, so that they can refund interest. Out of this, the decision to distribute 33 crore rupees has recently been announced by the state cooperative department. The banks that gave short-term crop loans to farmers in the state for the Kharip and Rabi seasons will also benefit.
As per state policy, the government repays one per cent interest to the banks, which provide finance to farmers at a rate of seven per cent. The burden of this one per cent interest is borne by the state exchequer. Thus, in actual terms, farmers receive these crop loans at a rate of six per cent. This scheme has been in place in Maharashtra since the Kharip and Rabi seasons of the year 2006-07. To start with, the scheme included district central cooperative banks, regional rural banks and nationalised banks. Last year, this benefit was also extended to private and commercial banks.
“We feel that cotton is one of the most profitable crops. So, for this, cotton was grown on eight acres of farmland this year as well. We were hoping for at least 14 to 15 quintals of cotton production per acre. But because of unfavourable weather conditions, only four quintals of cotton per acre was obtained. We were disappointed with such a poor result after having spent 13 to 15 thousand rupees per acre. As we have lost any hope of a better harvest in the future, we uprooted our cotton plants and replaced them with corn.” – Prabhakar Patil, Mitavali, Tal. Chopda, Dist. Jalgaon
THE LEVEL OF RISK IN “AGRICULTURE” IS COUPLED WITH FOOD SECURITY
Saroj Kumar Sanyal: Workshop on Agricultural advice based on international weather begins in Pune
Pune (Reporter): The level of risk in agriculture has increased because of the rise in global temperatures and changes in the atmosphere. Even if the temperature rises by 1 degree, productivity decreases by 3 to 7 per cent. Taking into account India’s increasing population, every year, 50 lakh tons of foodgrains are required. To meet this need when temperatures are rising, the level of risk in agriculture will have to be decreased. For this reason, agricultural advice based on local weather has become a necessity for food security, said Saroj Kumar Sanyal, the former chancellor of Bidan Chandra Agricultural University, who was in Pune today.