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India to Establish Dairy and Cooperative Banks in Every District, Announces Amit Shah

India 09.07.2024
Source: The DairyNews
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Union Cooperation Minister Amit Shah announced ambitious plans on Saturday for the expansion of India's cooperative sector, including the establishment of a milk producers' union and a cooperative bank in every district. The announcement was made during the 'Sahkar se Samriddhi' (Prosperity through Cooperation) event, marking the 102nd International Day of Cooperatives.
India to Establish Dairy and Cooperative Banks in Every District, Announces Amit Shah
Shah detailed a comprehensive strategy aimed at strengthening the rural and agricultural economy through enhanced cooperative efforts. Central to this plan is the establishment of multipurpose primary agriculture credit societies (PACS) in two lakh panchayats lacking cooperative institutions over the next five years.

"The government envisions a network where no state or district is without a robust district cooperative bank and a viable district milk producers’ union," Shah stated, emphasizing the critical role of these institutions in supporting agricultural and rural development.

The government's cooperative push is complemented by a range of supportive measures, including the introduction of a National Cooperative Policy and the formation of 1,100 new Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs). Additionally, Shah announced that more than 1 lakh PACS have adopted new bylaws to further streamline cooperative operations.

Financial mechanisms are also being bolstered with the issuance of Rs 2000 crore worth of bonds by the National Cooperative Development Corporation (NCDC), aiming to enhance the welfare of cooperative institutions across the country. Shah urged the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) and state cooperative banks to facilitate easier banking arrangements for PACS and other cooperatives, which he believes will fortify the sector's capital base and confidence.

In efforts to promote organic farming and ensure fair pricing for farmers, the government has established the National Cooperative Organic Limited (NCOL). Shah highlighted the launch of Bharat Organic Atta and the inauguration of the first exclusive Amul organic shop in Delhi as significant steps towards promoting health-conscious and sustainable farming practices.

Further extending support to farmers, Shah noted that the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED) and consumer cooperative institutions will procure four types of pulses at 100 percent Minimum Support Price (MSP).

The initiative also introduces three new multi-state cooperative institutions—the Organic Committee, Export Committee, and Seed Committee—to enrich the livelihoods of farmers and bolster the agricultural sector.

Reflecting on the broader impact of these initiatives, Shah reiterated the commitment to the 'Sahakar se Samriddhi' mantra endorsed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, aiming to bring prosperity and confidence to 30 crore people who remain underserved even after 75 years of independence. The day concluded with Shah engaging with community members and cooperative leaders, demonstrating the government's hands-on approach to fostering cooperative development across India.
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