“199 primary agricultural cooperative credit societies, which were issued liquidation notices by previous regime, revived”

The value of deposits in cooperative institutions has gone up from Rs.14,963 crore in 2005-2006 to Rs.23,793 crore, thanks to the restoration of public confidence in the institutions, Ko. Si. Mani, Cooperation Minister, told the Assembly on Friday. Replying to the debate on the demand for grants to his department, he said the present government had revived 199 primary agricultural cooperative credit societies (PACS), which had been issued liquidation notices by the previous regime. In the last four years, loans to the tune of Rs.278.25 crore were issued by such societies. The Cooperative Marketing Federation, which was running on loss for 10 years, began making profits two years ago and this trend continued since then.

Referring to complaints of some members that cooperative marketing societies had stopped procuring copra, the Minister said the procurement made during 2009-2010 was 27,044 tonnes at a cost of Rs.120.35 crore. It would continue this year too.

Referring to the contention of Pollachi V. Jayaraman (All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam) and T. Ramasamy (Communist Party of India) that crop loans were being disbursed only against jewellery, the Minister clarified that the loans were given if surety was provided. In the absence of surety, they were issued against jewellery.

Mr. Mani announced that the ceiling on loans under the micro credit scheme would go up from Rs.5,000 to Rs.10,000. A sum of Rs.100 crore would be disbursed this year. In the current year too, 100 PACS would set up agro service centres. A target of Rs.150 crore had been set for disbursing produce pledge loans this year, of which Rs.100 crore would be given through PACS and Rs.50 crore through cooperative marketing societies. During 2009-2010, Rs.133.62 crore was provided to farmers under this category of loans.

This year, Rs.7 crore would be disbursed to persons with disabilities for their economic development. In 2009-2010, Rs. 5.45 crore was given, the Minister added.

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