Pawar reiterates UPA's commitment to coop sector

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New Delhi, Jan 21 (UNI) Minister for Agriculture and Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Sharad Pawar today reiterated the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government commitment to the growth and development of the cooperative movement, the largest in the world.

After many trials and tribulations, the cooperative movement was moving into the 21st century for which they needed to invest in human reosurces, re-orient technology amd communication such as e-commerce along with control of management and transaction costs, he told the delegates to the 15th Indian Cooperative Congress organised by National Cooperative Union of India.

The Minister said the cooperative movement should continue to play its part in distribution of the benefits and gains of economic growth more widely among various sections of society paving way for equity and social justice in the country.

During the past few years steps had been taken to enable cooperatives to face new challenges of a gloablising world including cooperative reforms and giving the sector a boost through enunciation of the National Policy on Cooperatives and amendment to the Multi-State Cooperative Societies Act.

Based on the recommendations of the A Vaidyanathan task force, the Government has announced a package to give assistance to rural agricultural credit cooperative institutions to those states which have agreed to reform their cooperative laws in conformity with democratic control, he said.

In addition, the NCUI was being provided financial asistance for running several training centres located in different parts of the country and a corpus fund of Rs 200 crore set up to promote professionalism in the cooperative sector.

The cooperative sector in the country today was associated with more than five lakh cooperative societies and 220 million members covering 100 per cent of the villages and 71 per cent of all households.

Indian cooperatives contribute to 38 per cent of total rural credit disbursal along with 35 per cent of fertiliser and 46 per cent of sugar production. Cooperatives also accounted for a significant share of handloom, fisheries, labour and women cooperatives.

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