APCOB assaults Naidu's remarks on waiving off farm loans

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Tirupati, Nov 11 (UNI) The recent announcement of the TDP President N Chandrababu Naidu, that the party would waive off the agriculture loans if it comes to power, has come in for sharp criticism from Andhra Pradesh Cooperative Bank (APCOB) Chairman V Nageswara Rao.

Addressing a press conference, Mr Rao, who arrived here today for interacting with bank officials, lashed at the TDP President terming his statement ''a political vote bank gimmick.'' The Andhra Pradesh Cooperative Central Agricultural Development Bank Ltd (APCCADB), which was meeting the long term credit needs, merged with APCOB under the Single Window Credit Delivery System.

Out of Rs 21,000 crore loan disbursed for agriculture sector, 37 per cent of Rs 7,000 crore was lent by the Cooperative banks and remaining 63 per cent of Rs 14,000 crore was lent by Commercial banks.

He alleged that Mr Naidu's target was to abolish and weaken the cooperative sector by righting off the agricultural loans. During the TDP regime in the State, Mr Naidu had prepared Legislation to abolish the Cooperative bank sector but it could not be enacted.

Expressing displeasure over the lack of support from the Union Ministries of Finance and Agriculture, APCOB Chairman said this year, for the first time, the bank had paid Rs 2 crore as tax. As many as 34.62 lakh Kisan credit cards were also issued to the farmers upto October 31, 2007, he claimed.

UNI

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