Keeping pace with the govt, the cooperative sector displayed its skills and capacity during the three day Krishi Unnati Mela which concluded on Sunday with the valedictory address of Union Minister Radha Mohan Singh.
One can find well known co-op brands lining the stalls put up for the benefits of farmers. If fertilizer giants IFFCO and Kribhco were there, so were leaders of urban cooperative banks in the country-Saraswat Co-op Bank, PMC and others.
More than 60 cooperatives including Amul, IFFCO, KRIBHCO, National Cooperative Union of India (NCUI), Fishopfed, Sahakar Bharati, NLCF, ULCCS, Urban Cooperative Banks such as Saraswat Cooperative Bank, SVC Bank, PMC Bank, Bombay Mercantile Cooperative Bank, among others participated in the Krishi Unnati Mela 2018.
National Cooperative Development Corporation (NCDC) is said to have played a role in giving such a prominence to co-operatives, said a source. Several small Self Help Groups were also encouraged this time.
Our correspondent Rohit Gupta spent a day at the mela ground interacting with both farmers and co-op staff-members overseeing the stalls. His report:
India’s premier fertiliser cooperative IFFCO participated in Krishi Unnati Mela 2018, to popularize organic farming through a stall set-up at Pusa Campus, New Delhi.
IFFCO has set-up about 11 stalls with its subsidiaries like IFFCO-Tokio insurance company, IFFDC and others showcasing their services and products.
While talking to this correspondent, one of IFFCO’s delegates from Haryana, Sunil Khatri said “Today Prime Minister Narendra Modi underscored that the North-East was being developed as the hub of organic farming, as part of the government mission to promote organic farming in the country and we are here to promote and educate farmers about organic farming instead of using Chemical fertilizer to lend our support to the government efforts”.
”With a view to strengthening the IFFCO E-Bazar, through Krishi Unnati Mela 2018, we are listing farmers’ requirements to deliver our products free of cost to farmers. IFFCO has also set-up a Health stall for visitors”, the delegate informed.
IFFCO Managing Director Dr U S Awasthi shared the details of IFFCO’s participation in Krishi Unnati Mela 2018 through social media and wrote “Today #IFFCO will participate in the grand #KrishiUnnati Mela 2018 which will begin today in Mela ground, IARI, Pusa, New Delhi. Cooperative, Organics, Diary & Fisheries are main attraction.”
Talking to Indian Cooperative one of the farmers from Uttar Pradesh said “GOI has given us platform to collect information about the agriculture sector under one roof and we are taking advantage of it”, he said.
Krishak Bharati Cooperative Limited-KRIBHCO, the second largest fertilizer cooperative of India is making efforts to make people aware of the proper use of certified seed in farming activities through a stall set-up at Pusa Campus, New Delhi on the occasion of Krishi Unnati Mela 2018.
On this occasion, several subsidiaries and member societies of KRIBHCO have also set-up their stalls.
Dr. Surendra Singh, Additional General Manager, KRIBHCO said they are trying to inform farmers as well as visitors in general about the importance of certified seed. In addition, they have setup seed testing machine to explain its operations to the farmers. That certified seeds play an important role in increasing crop yields needs no emphasis, Singh said.
One of the women visitors from Uttar Pradesh said the government soil testing is not done in a proper way and KRIBHCO can step in to help farmers. Kribhco experts assured her of their all possible help in soil testing.
Singh said Kribhco is organizing training programs across India to educate farmers with the help of its 17 certified processing Units.
It is worth repeating that KRIBHCO is actively participating in such Melas being organized for farmers. Hundreds of farmers from different states of the country were seen making enquiries and collecting information from the KRIBHCO Stall.
While celebrating its century this year, largest Urban Cooperative Bank of India Saraswat Bank had set-up a stall at Pusa Campus, New Delhi in a three day Krishi Unnati Mela , 2018.
This is the first time that an Urban Cooperative Bank in the country has set-up its stall for creating brand awareness among the visitors. Several cooperatives are exhibiting their products in the three day annual mela. Only four Urban Cooperative Banks including SVC, PMC, Bombay Mercantile Cooperative Bank are showcasing their services.
While talking to this correspondent Ajay Jain, Chief General Manager, Saraswat Cooperative Bank who is overseeing the bank’s stall said “We have set-up the stall at Krishi Unnati Mela 2018 for the first time and we are getting positive responses from the visitors. Most of the visitors have very little information about cooperative banks but they are eager to get informed,” he said.
“Several visitors wanted our bank to open branches at Chandigarh, Jaipur, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh. We have noted their requests and we will discuss it with our higher authorities. Presently, our areas of operation cover six states including Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka and some others”, he informed.
He said, “The Mela has given us a platform to create brand awareness among the common people. Visitors are extremely to get informed about the loan structure of our bank. There is a separate space for cooperatives where over 60 cooperatives are showcasing their services”.
Saraswat Cooperative Bank has two branches in Delhi and its team working in the National Capital Region has made sincere efforts to make its participation in the fair a success.
Readers would recall that Saraswat Cooperative Bank has entered into the centenary year and before completing the glorious 100th year the bank is organizing several high-voltage functions across India.
Ms Sunita Prariskar, General Manager, Saraswat Bank, Shreyas Nagarkar, Chief Manager, Saraswat Bank, Viraj Pawar and others were present on the occasion.
Maharashtra based Punjab & Maharashtra Cooperative Bank (PMC) is also participating in Krishi Unnati Mela 2018 organized at Pusa Campus, New Delhi. PMC’s Delhi team is active creating awareness among the people about the latest agriculture policies announced by the GOI.
“People were querying us about the loan structure of our bank and visitors were collecting information about financial help the bank can offer for establishing Poly house”, said Silender Singh, Branch Manager, Tilak Nagar, Delhi.
Singh said, several visitors suggested the bank should expand business at Buldana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. Many others sought information about the availability of loans for the dairy sector, he said.
“This Mela offers a platform for creating brand awareness among the common people who are much less informed about the cooperative sector. The PMC Bank has six branches in Delhi”, he added.
Several officials including Rameeta Sethi, Regional Head and others were present on the occasion.
There are about 1500 Urban Cooperative Banks in India out of which four banks namely Saraswat Cooperative Bank, PMC Bank, SVC Bank, Bombay Mercantile Cooperative Bank have participated in the Krishi Unnati Mela 2018. There are indications that many more cooperative banks will take part in such fairs in the future.
The PMC bank is a Multi-State Scheduled Urban Co-operative Bank with its areas of operations covering Maharashtra, Delhi, Karnataka, Goa, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh.
More than 800 stalls were set up by the central and state governments and various other organizations.