Govt makes efforts to revive land development bank in 2 yrs

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Nagpur, Nov 30 (UNI) The Government is making efforts to revive the apex land development bank in the next two years and has announced a One-Time Settlement (OTS) scheme for borrowers for the purpose, Minister for Cooperatives Patangrao Kadam told the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly during question hour today.

Replying to supplementaries on a question from Ganpatrao Deshmukh (PWP), Mr Kadam said the Maharashtra State Agriculture Development and Rural Cooperative Bank (Land Development Bank), which had gone into liquidation, was being revived as per a formula worked out at a meeting in New Delhi of cooperative ministers of various states. According to the formula, banks that recovered 30 per cent of its arrears would be revived, he said.

It would take about two years for the recovery to reach that level through the OTS scheme, Mr Kadam said. Once the apex bank had been revived, the district-level banks would start functioning as its branches, he added.

As many as 16 district-level land development banks in Maharashtra had gone into liquidation, the Minister told the House. The deadline for applying for the OTS scheme was December 25, but would be extended if necessary, Mr Kadam said. The Government would pay by the end of January next the arrears of 22 months of salary for employees of the bank, he assured the House.

In a written reply to R O Patil (Shiv Sena) and several others, Mr Kadam said the Government had not taken any decision on giving interest-free loans to farmers in the state. The rate decided by the Government for short-term crop loan was six per cent, he said. There was no proposal before the Government about the creation of a cooperative regularity commission to prevent irregularities in cooperative banks and credit societies in the state, the Minister said in another written reply to Subhash Desai and Datta Nalawade (both Shiv Sena).

As many as 60 urban/rural non-agriculture cooperative credit societies had been put into liquidation in Miraj tehsil in Sangli district in August last, Mr Kadam told Madan Patil (Independent) and others. This had been done after the audit for the financial year ended March 31, 2006, he said.

In another written reply to Yogesh Patil (Shiv Sena) and others, Mr Kadam said the Government had issued an ordnance on October 29 last granting autonomy to cooperative societies that distribute short-term crop loans. The Cooperative Act would be amended later for the purpose, he added.

UNI

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