Banks to give fresh credit to 15,000 farmers

TIRUNELVELI, OCT.7. The 150-odd rural and semi-urban bank branches in the district, which have disbursed Rs.205.22 crores till July 31 in the current fiscal under the Special Farm Credit Policy, have decided to bring a minimum of 15,000 new farmers into their fold, extending fresh credit to them.

As per the new farm credit policy announced recently by the Union Finance Minister, P. Chidambaram, each branch should bring into its fold at least 100 new farmers and finance at least two to three agriculture or horticulture projects.

A minimum of 15,000 new farmers in the district are expected to get benefited and an assurance in this connection was given at a district-level review committee meeting of the banks, held here today under the chairmanship of the Project Officer, District Rural Development Agency, Tirunelveli, P. Ponniah.

The Lead District Manager, S. Nambiraj, said the 252 branches in the district had mobilised a total deposit of Rs.2,877.54 crores and disbursed advances to the tune of Rs. 1,454.33 crores as on June 30 last, including priority sector advances of Rs.931.39 crores, constituting 61 per cent against the prescribed norm of 40 per cent.

Except industrial advances, all key parameters had registered a positive growth, he added.

Credit assistance

Credit assistance had been given to 36 individuals and 754 self-help groups had availed themselves of the revolving fund assistance under the SGSY 2003-2004 scheme. Economic assistance had also been extended to 107 SHGs, while 17 other groups received similar assistance from the TAHDCO.

"Under Mahalirthittam, 7,744 women SHGs have been formed in the district, having 1,40,030 members and 6,655 groups have been given credit assistance of Rs.37.31 crores under various schemes," Mr. Nambiraj said.

Under the PMRY 2004-2005 scheme, 178 persons had so far been sanctioned loans to the tune of Rs. 94.03 lakhs for business ventures.

In a bid to create employment opportunities in the non-farming sector, Rs. 9.24 crore had been disbursed under the District Rural Industries Project scheme of the NABARD. A total of 9,149 Kisan Credit Cards had been issued to farmers, involving credit limit of Rs.17.77 crores during the quarter ended on June 30, Mr. Nambiraj said.

The Senior Regional Manager of the Indian Overseas Bank, R. Lakshminarasimhan, the Assistant General Manager, NABARD, K. Sridharan, the Manager, Reserve Bank of India, Chennai, P.D. Ravikumar, and others participated in the meeting.