Chowna Mein
Arunachal Pradesh deputy chief minister Chowna Mein meets heads of various policy and business departments of NABARD at its head office in Mumbai. Image credit - Northeast Now

Arunachal Pradesh deputy chief minister Chowna Mein met heads of various policy and business departments of National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) at its head office in Mumbai on the sidelines of an ideological training of BJP legislators from the state.

Mein was accompanied by Namsai MLA Chau Zingnu Namchoom during the visit.

Mein, citing that large sections of the rural population of Arunachal Pradesh depend on agriculture and allied sectors for their livelihood, sought rejuvenation of the sector with NABARD’s help.

He stated that banking infrastructure needs to be strengthened especially in rural areas for larger credit absorption and efficient delivery to improve the financial health of the rural people.

Taking note of the RIDF issues in the state, he advocated developing a hybrid fund by combining RIDF and NIDA as suggested by NABARD officials toward providing lower cost and a longer gestation period without affecting the borrowing power of the state.

He further stressed on the formation of Farmer’s Producer Organisation’s (FPO) and their hand-holding which would help the farmers in the state to a great extent as they will be able to produce scientifically and market their produce at remunerative prices.

He said that forming FPOs, especially for citronella, is highly essential in the state.

While acknowledging the contribution of NABARD in the progress of Arunachal Pradesh, Mein appreciated the inputs provided by NABARD officials in the meeting. With a view to making this year’s state budget more inclusive and broad based, he also sought inputs from NABARD on major priority areas in agriculture and allied activities.

Namchoom emphasised on the need for establishing a fishery institute in the state and sought NABARD’s guidance and support for the same.

He also said that Arunachal Pradesh needs to be supported for water supply projects under RIDF.

Gyanendra Mani, general manager and former OIC of NABARD’s Arunachal Regional office welcomed Mein and Namchoom.

He said NABARD got full support and cooperation from the state government, especially from the deputy CM which culminated in jointly organising a state conclave on agriculture and allied sector in Arunachal Pradesh on May 18-19. He added that the recommendation of same has already been brought out and road maps for various agriculture and allied activities have been prepared.

Mani suggested the revival of the cooperative banks as well as rural banks in the State so that they become eligible for refinancing from NABARD.

He further said that the state government needs to help banks in the state in recovering their dues by forming some committees under the chairmanships of DCs at the district level.

“The state government should provide budgetary support for the formation of at least 50 FPOs, modernisation of at least seven APMCs to make them eligible for e-NAM boarding, infrastructure support to the veterinary department for vet hospitals, dairy processing sericulture promotion, cold water fisheries, promotion of medicinal and aromatic plants,” Mani said.

He also suggested that the performance of KVKs may be reviewed with a view to engaging them in various developmental activities related to agriculture and allied sector.

GR Chintala, CGM, DOR, Jiji Mammen, CGM, Business Initiative Department, Neeraj Verma, GM and Ex-Managing Director of Nabkishan, Asit Kumar Mohanty, CGM, SPD and A.R. Khan, GM, FSPD also spoke on the occasion.

DAMIEN LEPCHA

Damien Lepcha is Northeast Now Correspondent in Arunachal Pradesh. He can be reached at: lepcharaul@gmail.com

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