NABARD to disburse Rs. 21,000 to farmers via cooperative banks

NABARD

The union government has allowed National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) to disburse Rs 21,000 crore to cash-starved farmers ahead of the sowing season to sow rabi crops like Wheat. NABARD will disburse the money to District Central Cooperative Banks (DCCBs) which will pass it on to the farm cooperatives for meeting crop loan requirements of farmers in Rabi season. Banks have been asked to ensure district cooperative banks and regional rural banks (RRBs) have required cash available to satisfy the sowing needs of the farmers. It is estimated that more than 40% of small and marginal farmers are availing crop loans from cooperative institutions. District Central Cooperative Banks (DCCBs) receive their cash from currency chests of banks and state cooperatives.

Rationale

Demonetisation has resulted in taking out 86% of currency from circulation. This has badly hit the farmers ahead of the sowing season as they are left with very little cash to buy seeds and fertilisers due to restrictions placed on bank withdrawals. After two successive years of drought, it becomes important to facilitate a conducive environment for crop production.

NABARD is an apex Development Bank with a mandate for facilitating credit flow for promotion and development of agriculture, small-scale industries, cottage and village industries, handicrafts and other rural crafts. In NABARD the majority stake is held by the Reserve Bank.

Rabi crops are sown in winter and harvested in the spring. The term Rabi is derived from the Arabic word for “spring”. Wheat, Gram, Pea, Mustard, Linseed, Barley, Peas etc. are examples of Rabi Crops.

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