CM urges Centre for Kisan Credit Cards to all farmers

Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has asked the Centre to direct commercial banks to launch a special drive to provide Kisan Credit Cards (KCC) to all farmers in the state by this year end.

In a letter to Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, the chief minister lamented that commercial banks failed to give adequate crop loan to the farmers in Odisha.

The banks should make available KCC to all the farmers and provide adequate credit support to the holders of these cards, he said. "These steps will go a long way in making a significant impact in Odisha, which is one of the seven focus states in the eastern region for the second Green Revolution with support from the union governemnt," Patnaik said.

The chief minister, who reviewed preparations for rabi cultivation, said commercial banks were providing only 30 per cent of total credit to the farmers, forcing them to depend heavily on cooperative banks.

Seeking an early response from Mukherjee, Patnaik said at a meeting of the state level bankers committee (SLBC) held in August, he had requested commercial banks to effectively discharge their responsibilities towards the farmers.

However, at another SLBC held on November 15, it was found that commercial banks` achievements under crop loan and total advances to the priority sector as against Actual Credit Plan were 59 per cent and 46 per cent respectively of the targets up to September, he said.

"It shows the commercial banks have not taken their task seriously at all", Patnaik said, seeking a special drive to provide KCCs to all farmers.