Farmers in Dehradun, Uttarakhand, are finding it difficult to purchase seeds and fertilizers due to shortage of money, and are now so desperate post demonetisation, that they are even approaching moneylenders to make ends meet.
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Parmod Kumar Singh, the chairman of the State Cooperative Federation said there are ten public sector banks and around 658 agricultural official committees in Dehradun district from whom the farmers take loans.
“We are connected with Kisaan family societies… with all such societies and we do our transactions with them only. The farmers deposit and withdraw their money from them. Restrictions have been imposed on transactions across the entire state government committees. Even the transactions of government banks have been restricted. Farmers could be liberated from the clutches of moneylenders. In other banks, some money can be withdrawn but in government banks they have completely restricted it. Does that mean that 80 percent farmers of the state are thieves? Do the farmers have all the black money? It seems like the Bharatiya Janata Party government is a government of businessmen,” he said.
“It is very unfortunate that the wheat sowing season is going on and for that there is no seed, no fertilizer and no money to withdraw or to give to the farmers, how is it going to work? Every person in the country is affected but the most affected ones are the farmers. They have an anti-farmer mentality. Prime Minister Narendra Modi should apologize and should improve the condition.” ” he added.
“The farmers have suffered losses because of demonetisation. Our transactions are through cooperatives only. There is no private shop in our area. The distribution of seeds and fertilisers takes place through the cooperative stores. The old banks of farmers which were in cooperative banks have come to standstill and even the business class is of farmers,” Ishwar Pal, the president of the sugarcane committee, told ANI.
He further said that 7,000-8,000 farmers itself are in the sugarcane committee and their work has come to a standstill.
“There are some fertilizers in the stores and once it is finished then we won’t be able to bring fertilizers. The conditions are worse. The government said we will get 25,000 but when we visit the banks we can’t get more 2,000-4,000.” He added.
Earlier, in a press conference the Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das said that the farmers can withdraw up to Rs. 25,000 per week from their KYC compliant accounts. Besides, Kisan Credit Cards will be subject to same new limit.