Kolkata: Following the direction of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, the state Cooperation department is setting up ‘banking service points’ at non-banking villages.The Chief Minister had directed to take necessary steps to ensure that people in rural parts of the state do not need to travel long distances in order to avail banking services.There were around 700 Gram Panchayats without banking services. In a bid to end such an inconvenience, the state Cooperation department took up the step of installing banking service points. As many as 2,600 banking service points are being set up. Most of the banking services facilities will be available at the service points. Online banking services will also be available. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeArup Roy, the state Cooperation minister, announced that there won’t be anymore villages in the state without banking services facilities while addressing the convention on direct paddy procurement organised at Nazrul Mancha on Monday in which representatives of 1,000 cooperative societies were present.State Education Minister Partha Chatterjee, state Urban Development and Municipal Affairs minister Firhad Hakim, state Food and Supplies minister Jyotipriya Mallick and state Agriculture Marketing minister Tapan Dasgupta were present at the inaugural function. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedMentioning that around 28 lakh metric tonne paddy was purchased directly from farmers in the last fiscal, Roy said: “This year as well his department is ready to go for direct purchase as per the target that will be set by the Chief Minister.” He further said that 80 percent of the total paddy purchase in the state takes place through cooperative societies. “Moreover, one lakh families will get Rs 18,000 each as financial support for poultry farming,” he added. Chatterjee said distress sell of agricultural produce by farmers has become a matter of past and this comes at a time when cooperative banks have provided more help through agricultural loans compared to other banks. He also took a dig at the erstwhile Left Front government for corruption in the cooperation system.It may be mentioned that around Rs 4,000 crore was disbursed as agricultural loan in 2017-18 through cooperatives, while the amount has increased to Rs 5200 in 2018-19. He further said he will be speaking to the Chief Minister to ensure that storage capacity for vegetables is increased. The step is needed to check wastage of vegetables.While speaking at the programme, Hakim said: “Farmers income has increased manifold in the state and it has ensured development in the state’s rural economy.” He added that no more distress sell takes place in the state.Mallick, whose department works hand in glove with the state Cooperation department in direct purchase of paddy, said: “Bengal is now a role model for the Centre as we directly transfer money to the bank account of farmers. Moreover, a toll free number will be introduced on which a farmer can call and inform if he wants to sell paddy. Subsequently, officials will visit his place with a truck to buy the same.”He further maintained that his department is yet to get Rs 300 crore for supplying rice for ICDS centres and midday meals. “Now, the Centre and the Food Corporation of India are at loggerheads over who’s going to pay for the same,” Mallick said adding that his department is prepared to supply 4 lakh metric tonne rice for ICDS centres and midday meal.
2600 banking service points coming soon across nonbanking villages
Last Updated on: August 31st, 2019 at 7:01 am, by