Chairs 123rd BoD meeting of SCARDB
SRINAGAR: Highlighting the significance of banking sector in inclusive growth, the minister for cooperative, Chering Dorjay, on Tuesday underscored the need for building a strong financial sector in J&K which can respond to the growing needs of the emerging economy.
Chairing the 123rd board of directors meeting of Jammu and Kashmir State Cooperative Agricultural and Rural Development Bank (JKSCARDB) here on Tuesday, the minister said the banks have a direct bearing on improving income levels of the people, reducing unemployment and alleviating poverty. He said although the credit support from banks to various sectors is increasing, but there is a vast scope for improvement.
“We are still lagging behind in the fixed benchmarks of credit-deposit (CD) ratio of agriculture sector. The banks must strike a balance between CD ratio and endeavor to equalize the national average,” he said.
The minister of state for cooperative, Zahoor Ahmad Mir, secretary cooperative Baseer Ahmad Khan, registrar cooperative societies, Bashir Ahmad Bhat, managing director, J&K State Cooperative, Agriculture, Rural Development Bank (SCARDB), Mohammad Aslam Bhat and representatives of finance, planning and development departments, besides officers of SCARDB, participated in the meeting.
Assuring all possible support from the government in building mutual trust between bankers and people for overall development of the state, Dorjay urged the banks to liberally provide credit in agriculture sector, the backbone of the state’s economy, which will contribute for development and prosperity of J&K.
“We are much behind the expectations with respect to covering farmer families under Kissan Credit Card Scheme”, Dorjay said.
“Expansion of dairy farming, poultry farming and sheep rearing are other sectors which have a prominent role in the state’s economy and need sustained development,” Dorjay said.
He said the development of these sectors on modern lines will help in retaining the money spent for importing milk and meat from other parts of India. He also called on focused attention for promoting handicrafts and handloom sectors which have tremendous employment generation opportunities.
The board decided to seek financial support of the government for the revival of JKSCARDB. It was observed that the bank has the distinction of extending long term agriculture loan/credit to the farming community and as such NABARD will be approached for initiating measures for its revival.
The minister stressed on reduction of NPA’s of the bank and improvement of credit deposit ratio to the desirable level which, he said, will increase profitability and overall financial complexion of the bank.
The minister directed the concerned authorities that priority should be given to most backward and hilly districts of J&K like Leh, Kargil, Bandipora, Kishtwar, Reasi and Doda so that more business is attracted.
The minister of state for cooperative, Zhoor Ahmad Mir asked the management of the bank to adopt a strong and stubborn recovery mechanism so that the money lying with defaulted borrowers is recovered in a time bound manner.
“Tighten the noose of the defaulters and ensure that the money lying with them is recovered and invested in other areas”, the minister told the bank authorities. He asked them to expand the clientele of the bank so that the business of the bank is further increased.
During a power point presentation, the MD SCARDB briefed the board members about the bank which is presently operating in the state through a network of 51 branches functioning in all the 22 districts of the state with a membership base of more than 95,848 till last fiscal.