HYDERABAD: Following RBI agreeing to reschedule crop loans, the Andhra Pradesh government has urged the Apex bank to extend the rescheduling period up to seven years. It also requested the RBI to treat gold loans taken by farmers for agricultural purpose as crop loan.
The RBI has written letters to Andhra Pradesh and Telangana governments indicating its willingness to consider a three-year relief for repayment of crop loans availed only during the last kharif season by farmers of both the states.
Speaking to reporters at the Secretariat here on Thursday, finance minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu said the government had already sent its reply to RBI governor on rescheduling of crop loans. ‘’Though the RBI in its letter has said that it would be rescheduling the crop loan for three years including the moratorium period we are asking them to extend the rescheduling for at least seven years,’’ he pointed out.
‘’Further, we are also asking the RBI to treat the gold loans taken by the farmers as crop loans so that they also get the benefit of loan rescheduling,’’ he said.
Usually the crop loan is given for kharif season but we are asking the RBI to extend it to one year, he said.
He said the RBI has sought to know the number of beneficiaries to be covered under the scheme to reschedule crop loans, the quantum of loans to be rescheduled and the number of such accounts which the state government has given in its letter to the Apex bank.
The problem arose as the Kiran Kumar Reddy government failed to send a report on drought and flood affected areas to RBI in the stipulated 90 days period, he explained. ‘’If the Kiran Reddy government had sent the report on time this problem would not have arisen.
We have explained to the RBI governor that during the last financial year there was no government in the state and it was under President’s rule. Hence they should consider their request and reschedule the crop loans for which the bank agreed,’’ Yanamala pointed out.
He said that once the RBI gives the official nod, the state would find sources for clearing loans of the farmers. ‘’If need be we will put the loan rescheduling amount in state’s budget but will not burden the farmers,’’ he remarked.
He said that even the mandals which were not affected by natural calamities would also get loan rescheduling benefit. “There are about 86 mandals which were not included in the drought-hit areas but still the government had decided to extend the benefit to them,’’ he said.