Bhubaneswar: Even though 85 per cent of the rural areas do not have bank branches, the government has taken steps to rollout Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) for fertiliser subsidies from next January.
According to cooperation minister Surya Narayan Patro, the Union government would provide the subsidy for fertilizers through DBT system from January 1 next year. Accordingly, all Primary Agriculture Cooperative Societies (PACS) and Large Area Multi Purpose cooperative Societies (LAMPS) have been asked to install point of sale (PoS) machines before December end, he said.
“Out of about 2,700 PACS and LAMPS, only 1000 odd societies have installed the PoS machines. We are repeatedly asking them to install the PoS soon to facilitate DBT for fertilizers,” Patro said.
Only 913 of 2708 PACS and LAMPCS have installed the PoS devices while the remaining societies and marketing agencies dealing with fertiliser business will get the PoS devices within December l5 this year, official sources said.
The director of agriculture and food production is providing and installing the PoS devices through authorised vendors. The entire process of supply and installation will be completed by December 31, an official said.
Under the fertilizer DBT system, farmers will continue to get fertilisers at a subsidised rate and the government will pay subsidy to companies on basis of actual sales made by the retailers.
Sale of all subsidised fertilizers to farmers will be made through PoS devices installed at each PACS and LAMPCS (retailer) and the beneficiary will be identified through Aadhar Card, Kissan Credit Card (KCC) and Voter Identity Card, the official said.
The farmers or buyer’s identity is verified through Aadhaar based biometric authentication/ Voter ID card/ Kissan Credit Card (KCC) and the buyer’s details will be captured in the PoS devices installed at the retailer’s end having online connectivity with a central server. All the fertilizer sale transaction will be tracked online in the Integrated Fertilizer Management System (IFMS).
However, questions are being raised about the effective implementation of the system as rural Orissa does not have sufficient bank branches and majority of the farmers are totally uneducated about the use of PoS.
The DBT for fertiliser subsidy is being implemented from October 1 in seven states/UTs, namely, Mizoram, Nagaland, Delhi, Puducherry, Goa, Daman and Diu, and Dadra and Nagar Haveli. The system would be rolled out in another dozen of states including Orissa from January.
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