ANDHRA PRADESH

Over 280 PACS workers may lose jobs

ANANTAPUR, AUG. 14. The State Government's decision to restructure ailing cooperative societies, particularly the Primary Agriculture Cooperative Credit Societies (PACS), functioning as subsidiaries to the District Cooperative Central Banks (DCCB), is likely to result in about 240 to 280 employees of PACS losing employment besides winding up of about 50 to 70 societies.

Panel formed

A high-level committee comprising of experts on the cooperative sector, retired officers as well as senior serving officers has been formed to look into the restructuring process.

The committee is likely to submit its recommendations within 20 days.

Sources told The Hindu that as per GO No. 94 dated February 28, 2004, the 212 PACS functioning in the district would require staff strength of 531 as against the current strength of 509.

However, 88 of them - mostly clerks and attenders appointed by PACS chairpersons -- were likely to get the axe due to over-staffing or due to the ceiling fixed on staff.

The business transactions of the 212 PACS in the district is about Rs. 261 crores per annum.

Closure of societies

Restructuring of the PACS is likely to result in the closure of about 50 to 70 of them owing to their poor performance, which means another 100 to 140 employees -- half of them paid secretaries - will lose their jobs.

The Government has also decided to sack a few paid secretaries and others, who have been charged with misappropriation of PACS funds.

However, insiders feel that instead of removing the staff and winding up the societies, streamlining of things with foolproof supervision will revive sick PACS.

Poor recovery

The PACS/DCCB have not been conducting any auction (disposal) of assets and properties mortgaged against loan taken, for the last few years due to the Government decision, taken more out of political compulsions.

This also had an adverse impact on recovery of loans, which had gone down in recent years.

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