PACCS functioning severely affected

Farmers, people in rural areas face hardships in Kanniyakumari district

Demonetisation of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 currencies had severely affected Primary Agricultural Cooperative Credit Societies across the district, said C. Soundarraj, district secretary, Kanniyakumari District Cooperative Employees’ Association, affiliated to the CITU, here on Sunday.

Mr. Soundarraj told The Hindu that the normal functioning of the PACCS throughout the country was affected, as they could not disburse maturity amounts on fixed deposits and recurring deposits to its members, and the members were not able even to redeem their pledged jewels in time.

Self-Help Group (SHG) members and Joint Liability Groups (JLGs), having account with the PACCS, were not able to transact any business. This affected recovery of loans, and the farmers were not able to avail themselves of crop loans and buy fertilizers, he said.

The shortage of Rs. 100 notes and those below the denomination rendered the people unable to buy essential commodities from ration shops, he added.

As the PACCS were not authorised to accept demonetised currencies, normal life of the rural people, especially the farmers and the downtrodden, was seriously affected, Mr. Soundarraj said.

S. Suresh Kumar, president, Tirunandikkarai Primary Agricultural Cooperative Credit Society, said ever since the announcement of the invalidation of high value currencies, the day-to-day activities of the PACCS had come to a standstill.

When contacted, a top official of Cooperative Department said only District Cooperative Banks (DCBs) and Urban Cooperative Banks were authorised to receive old currencies from the customers. They were not able to transact any other normal business. To avoid malpractice in registering old notes with back date, the officials had collected closing cash balance as on November 8 from all the DCBs and the UCBs, the official added.

The farmers, however, could avail themselves of crop loans from the PACCS. The farmers’ applications should be sent to the DCBs or the UCBs for cash credit facility. Once, the loans were sanctioned, the farmers had to open Savings Bank accounts and withdraw the money from the concerned bank, he added.

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