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No credit plan for kharif; Vikarabad farmers left in the lurch

No credit plan for kharif; Vikarabad farmers left in the lurch
Highlights

In the absence of finalising credit plan for kharif, banks are not able to advance loans to farmers, who find assistance doled out by the state government under Rythu Bandhu scheme is inadequate to sustain farming operations

Vikarabad: In the absence of finalising credit plan for kharif, banks are not able to advance loans to farmers, who find assistance doled out by the state government under Rythu Bandhu scheme is inadequate to sustain farming operations.

The bankers are in a piquant situation as they are not aware of how much loan target has been fixed for each bank. Therefore, they are not able to advance loans to the farmers. Therefore, the farmers have no option but to take gold loans, loans against their lands and borrow money at usurious interest from private money lenders. Moreover, some banks have been demanding farmers to produce the latest pahanis (land documents) to advance them loans. The Dharani website into which pattadar passbook details of farmers have been fed is going through technical problems.

The state-level bankers’ meeting convened by Finance Minister Etela Rajender finalised the annual credit plan for bankers. The district Collector and Agriculture officials have to convene a meeting of district level bankers and peg at the annual credit plan for the district. In spite of farmers are well into the kharif season, no credit plan has been released so far. Therefore, the farmers have been facing problems to purchase farm equipment, seeds, fertilizers and so on. The problem of shortage of agricultural workers has been compounded as area under various crops in kharif increased. It may be recalled that the bankers could meet only 45 per cent of the last year’s target for advancing farm loans.

The area under maize, cotton, groundnut and red gram and other crops increased to 1.73 lakh hectares requiring more investment on the part of the farmers. This has forced the farmers to obtain gold loans, loans against property and so on. It was high time the district collector finalized the district credit plan for kharif and accelerated disbursement of crop loans to farmers. The district lead bank management is optimistic of holding a meeting with the district collector to finalise the credit plan size, which according to it would be of the order of Rs 4500 crore.

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