Chandigarh: Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Friday asked bankers to provide loans to small farmers at low interest rates to give boost to agriculture as well as other allied sectors like dairy farming, fisheries, poultry among others.
Khattar stated this while addressing a 131st State Level Bankers' Committee (SLBC) meeting here today.
Khattar also expressed concern over the low loan recovery.
"I am quite concerned about the problem of loan recovery," he said, adding that efforts were being made by the government to change this scenario so as to increase the recovery of commercial banks.
Recovery is necessary for the smooth functioning of banks, he added.
He said the scenario has changed after the formation of BJP-led government in Haryana leading to record recovery of Rs 200 crore in the past three months by the Cooperative Banks.
The CM said the land holdings have been shrinking, adding that Haryana has a total of 16.17 lakh land holdings out of which small and marginal holdings are about 11 lakh which constitutes 70 per cent of the total land holdings.
The small and marginal farmers always have limited resources for growing crops. Hence, it was necessary to provide them loans on low rate of interest for other agri related businesses also so as to increase their income, he said.
His government has provided a financial assistance of Rs 100 crore to Cooperative Agriculture Banks and Rural Development Banks so that these institutions could provide maximum loans.
While underlining the need of better banking system for the rapid development in this era of open economy, he urged the banks to open more bank branches in the villages which is 2228 at present so that maximum facilities could be provided to the people at the grass root level.
Haryana has a total of 4,158 branches of Commercial and Rural Regional Banks.
He said presently there are 1,984 Business Correspondent Agents (BCAs) in the state and urged the banks to increase this number.
The government has decided to disburse the increased Old Age Pension of February paid in the month of March through banks, he said.
The Chief Minister said the state government is going to implement its new industrial policy by March 2015 and under this, special emphasis would be given on the setting up of small and agro-based industries.
He urged the banks to provide maximum loan facilities to small and agro based industries as this would not only increase the growth rate but over all development of the State would also be ensured.
Khattar said that he wanted to make Haryana as a Model State for the country and also the leading state to achieve the national target of 'Make in India'.
Speaking on this occasion, Chairman SLBC Gauri Shankar said banks have extended education loans amounting to Rs 1,227.41 crore to as many as 44,885 students in Haryana till December 2014.
Weaker section advances have gone up from Rs 16,546 crore as at December 2013 to Rs 19,851 crore as at December 2014 thereby registered a growth of 19.97 per cent, he added.