Karnataka

Mysuru farmers welcome move to halt loan recovery

Farmers, led by State Sugarcane Growers’ Association Kurubur Shanthkumar, staging a protest in Mysuru on Wednesday.

Farmers, led by State Sugarcane Growers’ Association Kurubur Shanthkumar, staging a protest in Mysuru on Wednesday.   | Photo Credit: M.A. SRIRAM

There were protests across the State concerning the issue

The State Sugarcane Growers’ Association, Mysuru, has welcomed the State government’s move to suspend recovery of loans taken from Primary, Cooperative, Agriculture and Rural Development (PCARD) banks with immediate effect.

Farmers had staged protests across the State, including Mysuru, over the loan recovery, which also included seizure of tractors for defaults and alleged collection of blank cheques from farmers.

Association President Kurubur Shanthkumar, who had staged the protest with hundreds of farmers here on Wednesday morning against what he called “forcible recovery” of tractor loans, told The Hindu that the government has responded positively to farmers’ concerns.

Registrar of Cooperative Societies N.S. Prasanna Kumar, in a letter to the Managing Director, Karnataka State Cooperative Agriculture and Rural Development Bank (KASCARD), on Wednesday, a copy of which is with The Hindu, asked for withholding the loan recovery until further instructions.

The MD had also been asked to direct district branches and PCARD banks to comply with the order.

Earlier, Mr. Shanthkumar, while addressing the protesters, had said that farmers who had taken loans for purchasing tractors from PCARD banks had been put to difficulty because of the previous government’s reported announcement.

“The JD(S)-Congress government headed by H.D. Kumaraswamy had promised to waive tractor loans after the waiver of crop loans. Therefore, the farmers did not pay their instalments towards their tractor loan. But the banks resorted to recovery, collecting blank cheques from farmers. The banks had also seized tractors,” he said.

He said the farmers were in a state of distress over floods and drought and were not getting suitable price for their produce such as sugarcane and paddy and had therefore demanded suspension of loan recovery and return of the blank cheques and tractors.

Mr. Shanthkumar also sought action against the bank staff for their “unrestrained behaviour” in recovering loan amounts.

Association Secretary Attahalli Devaraju, District President B. Somashekar and others were present during the protest.

As a precautionary measure, police personnel had been deployed at the protest site.

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Printable version | Jul 15, 2020 6:32:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/mysuru-farmers-welcome-move-to-halt-loan-recovery/article30628509.ece

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