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Banks Ignoring Credit Issue of Distressed Farmers in Maharashtra: State Govt Writes to PM Modi

A Maharashtra government body has appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to 'empower' chief minister Devendra Fadnavis to take action against the concerned bank officials.


Updated:June 2, 2019, 5:56 PM IST
Banks Ignoring Credit Issue of Distressed Farmers in Maharashtra: State Govt Writes to PM Modi
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Nagpur: Alleging indifferent attitude on part of banks in providing loans to distressed farmers, a Maharashtra government body has appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to "empower" Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to take action against the bank officials concerned.

Kishore Tiwari, who heads the Vasantrao Naik Sheti Swavlamban Mission, demanded that Fadnavis be made chairman of the State Level Bankers' Committee (SLBC).

The SLBC is expected to discuss issues, consider alternative solutions to the various problems in the field of banking development and evolve a consensus for co-ordinate action by the member institutions.

The VNSSM, set up by the state government, is empowered to recommend and ensure implementation of a host of measures for the welfare of farmers to prevent more incidents of suicides in the parched farmlands in 14 districts in its jurisdiction.

"Despite the chief minister's stress on providing bank finance to all farmers, public sector and other commercial banks continue to ignore the credit issue of distressed farmers who are committing suicides. On an average, five farmers kill themselves per day as per the government data," Tiwari stated in a release.

He claimed that most of the PSU banks are yet to start disbursement of fresh crop loans or reconstruction of pending crop loans as per the orders of the RBI and NABARD in drought-hit districts in Vidarbha and Marathwada regions.

Tiwari requested the PM to "sensitise" the nationalised banks in meeting the farm credit targets fixed by the government.

"The Centre has set a target of Rs 13 lakh crore for agricultural loans while Maharashtra's share is Rs 1.20 lakh crore. With this speed of disbursal, bankers will meet only half of this target as on today, as loan accounts are yet to be re-structured in drought-affected areas.

"District administration and banks should be held accountable for failure to provide crop loans to farmers seeking credit," Tiwari demanded.

Fadnavis had last month approved Rs 4.24 lakh crore annual credit plan for the year 2019-20, at the 143rd SLBC meeting in Mumbai.

The plan includes annual credit plan for agriculture of Rs 87,322 crore.

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