Agriculture soul of Odisha’s economy: CM Patnaik
The chief minister said the cooperative movement has become stronger in Odisha and 60 per cent of the farm loans are being provided by this sector alone
BHUBANESWAR: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Monday said agriculture is the soul of Odisha’s economy and the basis of the development of the state.
Speaking at a function held at Lok Seva Bhavan through video-conferencing, where interest subvention of Rs 441.76 crore was provided for the benefit of 35 lakh farmers of the state, he said, “The charioteers of our new Odisha, strong Odisha are our farmers, mothers and youth. So, I have always emphasised on their empowerment.”
Stating the Odisha government is placing a separate agriculture budget for further empowerment of the farmers, the chief minister said interest-free farm loans up to Rs 1 lakh is being provided for their benefit. Odisha is the first state in the country to provide interest-free loans to farmers and also take care of the studies of their children by giving them scholarships. Naveen said he was glad that Kiran Sahu, a farmer’s son in Ganjam, received a scholarship to study at Berhampur Medical College.
The chief minister said the cooperative movement has become stronger in Odisha and 60 per cent of the farm loans are being provided by this sector alone. All cooperative banks and 2,409 primary agricultural cooperatives (PACs) of the state benefited from the concession in the farm loan interest. In the first phase, an interest subvention of Rs 415.17 crore had been paid. With this, the total interest subvention paid by the state government has reached Rs 856.99 crore. Farmers in the state do not have to pay any interest for crop loans up to Rs 1 lakh. Of the total number of farmers, 30 lakh are small and marginal.
Cooperation Minister Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak said Odisha has become a surplus state from a deficit one because of the joint programmes launched by Cooperation, Agriculture and Food Supplies Department. On the occasion, three beneficiaries explained how they sustain their families through farming and business due to interest subvention. Chief Secretary PK Jena and senior officials were present.
- Interest-free loans of up to Rs l lakh are being given to farmers in the state
- In the first phase, an interest subvention of Rs 415.17 crore was paid
- Total interest subvention paid by the state govt has reached Rs 856.99 crore