Odisha to disburse farm loans to landless farmers under ‘Balaram’

The State government targets to provide farm loans to 7 lakh landless farmers in next two years

Bhubaneswar: In a bid to provide relief to landless farmers in Odisha, the State government will disburse farm loans to them under its ‘Balaram’ scheme. Chief Secretary Asit Kumar Tripathy directed officials to provide agricultural loans to the landless farmers through joint liability groups (JLGs).

During a meeting chaired by the Chief Secretary it was decided while IMAGE will coordinate to implement the scheme at the State level, the Agricultural Technology Management Agency (ATMA) will coordinate at the district level.

The Chief Secretary directed every bank branch in the State to provide at least 10 farm loans this year. In rural areas and small towns in the State, there are around 7,000 branches of banks and Primary Agricultural Cooperative Societies.

Around 70,000 groups will get farm loans under the scheme this year. Official sources said each group will comprise of five landless farmers. Official sources said each group will comprise of five landless farmers will get maximum Rs 1.60 lakh loan. The State government has targeted to provide farm loans to seven lakh landless farmers in next two years.

Among others, Development Commissioner SC Mohapatra, Agriculture and Farmers’ Empowerment Principal Secretary Saurabh Garg, Finance Department Principal Secretary Ashok Meena and other senior officials were present in the meeting.

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