Cooperation Wins

Ravi Gupta

As India became Independent in 1947, its economy was in a bad shape and the ‘Great British Robbery’ of decades


had left the peasants and farming community virtually in tatters. Adding to their woes were the traditional moneylenders, who would take away even the last piece of cloth off the poor borrower’s person.

It was then that the country woke up to the cooperative movement, and societies were formed by groups and communities to help themselves. While in most parts of the country this movement withered out even before full bloom, some states took it to its logical conclusion and further continued with it. Maharashtra is one of the few states where cooperatives found their way into various sectors, like agriculture, banking, housing, dairying and textiles, etc.

As many as 54 different types of cooperatives, including sugar cooperatives, spinning mills, housing societies, labour federations, etc., are successfully running today, and the number of such institutions is around 2.30 lakh. According to the latest data, nearly 6.5 crore people of the State, constituting about 50 per cent of the total population, are in one way or the other connected to the cooperative movement and being benefited from them.

In the agriculture sector, during 2013-14, Rs 34,888 crore crop loan was given to the farmers in Maharashtra, out of which Rs 13,556 crore were distributed through the cooperative sector and Rs 19,642 crore through the commercial banks. But the number of farmers covered by the cooperative sector was more than that of the commercial banks. Even in terms of investment credit, there are 1.36 crore farmer families and 76 lakh farmers, who get the benefit of crop loans at present.

With 4,839 branches and 1,576 ATMs, cooperative banks have made their presence felt in every nook and corner of the State. What is more, in keeping with the demand of times, the cooperative banks are also adopting IT tools to increase scale, efficiency and customer satisfaction to remain the highly competitive ecosystem.

Given the extraordinary achievements of the State in the cooperative sector, Elets Technomedia, in association with the Department of Cooperation, Marketing & Textile, Government of Maharashtra, is organising ‘Maharashtra Cooperative Summit’, in the financial capital of India—Mumbai—on 9th September 2015.

The occasion will see key decision-makers, senior government officials from Maharashtra and beyond, and stakeholders like office-bearers of different cooperative bodies, technology players in the domain and experts coming together on a platform to deliver insights on the current cooperative scenario and the road ahead.Around 50 leading banking IT providers will be face to face with cooperative bankers to discuss the possibility of collaboration. Besides, an estimated 200 cooperative bankers will share their regulatory and other business challenges and come out with recommendations.

So, be there to be part of it all.


The Banking & Finance Post is an initiative of Elets Technomedia Pvt Ltd, existing since 2003.
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