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Farmers upset with agriculture banks

Staff Reporter

Criminal action against secretary demanded



WELL DONE: Collector R.Selvaraj handing over a crop yield prize to a farmer in Tuticorin on Thursday.

Tuticorin: Farmers unanimously raised apprehensions over the maladministration of Primary Agriculture Cooperative Banks across the district. The banks had lost credibility among farmers.

At a meeting held here on Thursday, farmers aired grievances over the secretary of Primary Agriculture Cooperative Bank at Eeratchi under Ettayapuram taluk. They demanded criminal action against the secretary who has allegedly misappropriated the farmers' jewellery which were mortgaged in the bank last year.

The jewellery deposited in the bank by the farmers had been shifted to Muthoot branch in Kovilpatti under the secretary's name.

Presiding over the programme, Collector R. Selvaraj sought explanation from the Regional Joint Registrar of Cooperative Societies M. Murugan.

Mr. Murugan replied that a case had been filed against the official with Commercial Crime Investigation Wing and proceedings were on. The Collector wanted to him to expedite the case to punish the guilty.

S. Mariappan, deputy secretary, Tamil Nadu Vivasayigal Sangam, Tuticorin, said similar problems were happening throughout the district.

Even some primary agriculture co-operative societies were defunct and bankrupt following mismanagement by officials. But the farmers, who deposited money at initial stage, could not receive their money properly.

But Mr. Murugan denied it. A cooperative society was closed at Elavelengal ten years back. The government earmarked Rs. 7. 50 lakh for the disbursal of deposits to farmers. Deposit funds to the tune of Rs. 6 lakh had been given back to 64 farmers and other 12 depositors were yet to receive their money.

The government has failed to provide compensation for 468 sheep, which were reportedly died of blue tongue disease.

Farmers of Usilampatti village, Ettayapuram taluk, were not provided with compensation.

Relief was given only for the death of 106 sheep belonging to 18 farmers, Mr. Mariappan said. The official said the sheep were buried without conducting post-mortem. The Collector asked the authorities concerned to maintain record of these incidents properly.

On crop yield competition in 2010 – 11, five farmers were given cash prizes.

K. Raghavan of Ottapidaram, who received Rs. 10,000, raised 15, 605 kilograms of maize per hectare. He stood second at the State level.

S. Sundaraj of Ottapidaram, who raised 9, 200 kg of maize per hectare, was provided with Rs. 10,000.

A. Ramaraj of Pudhur received a sum of Rs. 5, 000 for maize cultivation to the tune of 9010 kg per hectare.

K. Mariappan of Kayathar got an yield of 4, 660 kg of cumbu and received Rs. 10,000. M. Velraj of Naduvakurichi, Ottapidaram, got a yield of 4, 260 kg of cumbu and got Rs. 5, 000.

Besides, government also extended compensation of Rs. 28.98 lakh under National Agriculture Insurance Scheme for 2009 – 10. As many as 257 farmers, who dealt with banana, green gram and blackgram on 1, 265 acres of land, would be benefitted.

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