The Kaira District Co-operative Milk Producers’ Union (KDCMPU), a member union of GCMMF which markets its products under brand Amul, today said it has opened bank accounts for all its 6.7 lakh member farmers. KDCMPU, member union of Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF), the agency that markets Amul brand of milk and milk products, today claimed that between November 8 and December 20, 2.5 lakh more members farmers were brought under banking system.
“Out of our 6.7 lakh members, 4.2 lakh members had their bank accounts in nationalised banks. We opened bank accounts for remaining 2.5 lakh members,” KDCMPU chairman Ramsinh Parmar told reporters.
“With this, the money for milk sold to us will be transferred into the accounts of 1,210 associated milk societies, which will in turn transfer the money into the accounts of individual farmers,” Parmar said.
Out of 617 villages under Amul Dairy, 154 villages have bank branch or ATMs within the villages, while 463 villages have ATMs or bank branches between 5 and 25 kms distance, he said.
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“To make money withdrawal easier for farmers who do not have banks in their villages, Amul Dairy has set up micro ATMs in 180 milk societies, and is in talks with nationalised banks to set up similar micro ATMs in remaining 480 banks,” Parmar said.
He said the farmers will also be given special Amul card which will be relatively safe to operate for withdrawing and transferring money from their accounts.
The dairy union also operates milk societies in West Bengal, Maharashtra and Punjab.
“We have provided bank accounts to milk producers in these states as well,” Parmar claimed.
In West Bengal, Amul Dairy operates 219 societies with 21,000 members, in Maharashtra it has 91 societies and 7,950 members, and in Punjab it has 119 societies with 12,037 members.
Parmar said the dairy cooperative disbursed Rs 215 crore to member milk societies after demonetisation came into effect.
He said the sale of milk dropped from 23 lakh litre per day to 22 lakh litre as some farmers who could not receive money due to demonetisation and ban on central co-operative banks to sell their produce to private parties who offered them money in cash.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 8 had announced his government’s decision to demonetise high value currency notes.