Staff Correspondent

BELLARY: The annual credit plan for Bellary district with an outlay of Rs. 1,530 crore for 2008-09 was launched here on Wednesday by Anthony Mendonca, Chief Executive Officer of Zilla Panchayat.

Of the outlay of Rs.1,530 crore, which is more by Rs. 126 crore over the previous year’s, a sum of Rs. 1,195 crore has been earmarked for the priority sector and Rs. 335 crore for the non-priority sector. As usual, agriculture, which is the predominant occupation of the district, gets a lion’s share with Rs. 717.08 crore. Of this, crop loan gets a share of Rs. 504 crore. Last year, Rs. 637 crore had been earmarked for agriculture and allied activities, with crop loan getting Rs. 454 crore.

The outlay under the secondary sector comprising non-farm sector and small industries is Rs. 174 crore. A sum of Rs. 305 crore has been set aside for small trade and business under the tertiary sector.

The plan also envisages distribution of Rs. 1.68 crore under the Swarna Jayanti Swa-rozgar Yojana and Rs. 9.37 crore under the Sampoorna Grama Swa-rozgar Yojana. In addition, Rs. 506.07 crore has been set aside for the implementation of various government-sponsored programmes, including finance to women, weaker sections of society and issue of Kisan credit cards.

The following is the sector-wise allocation: minor irrigation Rs. 29.47 crore; land development Rs. 18.66 crore; farm mechanisation Rs. 58.56 crore; plantation and horticulture Rs. 15.54 crore; dairy Rs. 11.75 crore; poultry Rs. 22.27 crore; sheep-goat-piggery Rs. 2.81 crore; fisheries Rs. 3.69 crore and storage godowns/marketyards Rs. 40.81 crore. The total agricultural credit is Rs. 717.08 crore and crop loan Rs. 503.87 crore.

The non-farm sector, including agro and food processing has been set aside Rs. 173.57 crore and other priority sector accounts for Rs. 304.72 crore.

The annual credit plan will be implemented by 199 branches of various banks in the district. It will be monitored by the Syndicate Bank, lead bank, along with National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD).

Ramana Rao, Assistant General Manager, NABARD, who presented the highlights of the credit plan, said that there was scope for undertaking food processing activities.

As against the target of Rs. 880 crore for the quarter ended December 2007 pertaining to the previous year, banks had disbursed Rs. 488 crore under the priority sector. The achievements under agriculture and allied activities was to the tune of Rs. 317 crore, secondary sector Rs. 45 crore and under the tertiary sector it was Rs. 126 crore.

G. Karunakar Reddy, Bellary MP, G. Janardhan Reddy, MLC, H.N. Vishweshwar, Assistant General Manager, Syndicate Bank Regional Office, Bellary, and S. Prabhakar, Assistant General Manager, RBI, Bangalore, were present.