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Aatma Nirbhar Bharat: FM announces governance and administrative reforms for agriculture

Union Finance & Corporate Affairs Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday in her press conference announced the 3rd tranche of measures to strengthen Infrastructure Logistics, Capacity Building, Governance and Administrative Reforms for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Processing Sectors.

Giving details, Sitharaman said that out of these 11 measures, 8 measures are for improving agricultural infrastructure and 3 measures are for administrative and governance reforms, including removing restrictions on sale and stock limits of farm produce.

In her opening remarks, the Union Finance Minister said that two significant Agriculture-related measures were also announced on Friday to support farmers, Rs 30,000 crore as Additional Emergency Working Capital facility through NABARD to enable RRBs and Cooperative Banks extending farm loans for Rabi post-harvest and Kharif expenses. And second was a mission-mode drive to enable Rs 2 lakh crore credit boost to the farm sector by covering 2.5 crore PM-KISAN beneficiaries under Kisan Credit Card Scheme by December 2020.

Outlining what the Government has done over the last 2 months, the Finance Minister said that during lockdown period Minimum Support Price (MSP) purchases of amount more than Rs 74,300 crore, PM KISAN fund Transfer of Rs 18,700 crore and PM Fasal Bima Yojana claim payment of Rs 6,400 crore have been made.

Further, during Lockdown, demand of milk reduced by 20-25%. Accordingly, 560 Lakh litre per day (LLPD) were procured by cooperatives against daily sale of 360 LLPD. Total 111 crore litres of milk extra procured ensuring payment of Rs 4,100 crore.

Further, a new scheme to provide interest subvention @2% per annum to dairy cooperatives for 2020-21 has been launched, also providing additional 2% p.a interest subvention on prompt payment/interest servicing. This scheme will unlock Rs 5,000 crore additional liquidity, benefitting 2 crore farmers.

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