Express news service
MUMBAI: Pre-monsoon activities have started but farmers are facing difficulties in obtaining the harvest loan. Banks do not disburse the loan citing various reasons such as past default and other technical issues.
The government of Maharashtra has planned to disburse the loan of Rs 43,000 crore this year. Harvest loan is very important for farmers to buy seeds, fertilizers and other farm related items. If the farmers do not have money on hand, they will be unable to plant and cultivate their farm.
According to the government, out of a total of Rs 43,000 crore, the nationalized banks disbursed Rs 2,300 crore against the given target of Rs 32,161 crore, while district and cooperative banks disbursed Rs 6,258 crore against the target. of Rs 13,524 crore. It shows that nationalized banks disbursed a total of 7 percent of the crop loan while district and cooperative banks disbursed 46 percent of the amount.
The government of Maharashtra had announced the agricultural loan exemption program, but the program could not be fully implemented due to the pandemic situation and the continued lockdown. The benefit of this agricultural loan waiver could not reach the farmers, many of whom are on the default list. The banks are refusing to pay the new loan to these farmers.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray called the meeting of banks and other stakeholders and demanded that the loan be disbursed to all farmers. Thackeray had also taken the guarantee of the farmers who appeared on the list of defaulting banks.
In western Maharashtra, disbursement of agricultural loans has proceeded efficiently while in Marathwada and Vidarbha it has been quite slow. Banks are lingering in offering the crop loan to farmers who are struggling due to the foreclosure.
Leader farmer Vijay Jawandia said cooperative banks follow instructions from the state government, but nationalized banks do not. “Nationalized banks follow the guidelines of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) guidelines. Therefore, the central government should participate in this condition. The government should declare drought so that farmers benefit from government decisions. If the government can give aid to small industries, in addition to offering a moratorium to buyers of real estate, then why not help farmers, ”Jawandia said.
He said that due to the lockdown, farmers could not sell their agricultural products this year. “Many farmers threw their crops in their backyards. The government should give all possible help to farmers, otherwise the agricultural sector will be in big trouble, ”Jawandia said.