PM Modi unveils 11 godowns under world’s largest grain storage plan | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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PM Modi unveils 11 godowns under world’s largest grain storage plan

Feb 25, 2024 01:13 AM IST

PM Modi inaugurated world's largest grain storage plan in cooperative sector, aiming to create 700 lakh tonnes storage capacity in 5 years, benefiting farmers.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday launched the world’s largest grain storage plan in the cooperative sector with the inauguration of 11 godowns in primary agricultural credit societies (PACS) in 11 states.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Union Minister Amit Shah during the inauguration & foundation stone laying ceremony of multiple key initiatives for cooperative sector at Bharat Mandapam in New Delhi on Saturday. (HT photo)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Union Minister Amit Shah during the inauguration & foundation stone laying ceremony of multiple key initiatives for cooperative sector at Bharat Mandapam in New Delhi on Saturday. (HT photo)

“Today, we started the world’s largest storage scheme for our farmers. Under this, in every corner of the country, thousands of warehouses and godowns will be built,” Modi said during the inauguration at Bharat Mandapan in the capital. “Today, 18,000 PACS are also computerised. All these will give will a new expansion to agriculture infrastructure in the country and connect agriculture to modern technology.”

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At least 700 lakh tonnes of storage capacity will be created over the next five years in the cooperative sector by constructing thousands of godowns and warehouses, Modi said. He also laid the foundation stone for an additional 500 primary agricultural credit societies across the country for the creation of godowns.

“Farmers were forced to bear losses due to lack of storage infrastructure in this country. But through PACS today, the problem is being addressed. Under the world’s largest food grain storage project, 700 lakh tonnes storage capacity will be created in the next five years,” the Prime Minister said. “More than 1.25 lakh crore will be spent on this initiative.”

This will enable farmers to store their produce and sell it at the right time according to their needs while also helping to avail loans from banks. “Modernization of agricultural systems is equally important for the creation of a Viksit Bharat (developed India),” Modi said, highlighting the government’s endeavour to create a new role for government organizations such as PACS.

“These committees are functioning as Jan Aushadhi Kendras, while thousands of PM Kisan Samruddhi Kendras are also being operated. Cooperative committees are operating in the areas of petrol, diesel and LPG cylinders while PACS also play the role of water committees in several villages,” he said. “Cooperative committees are now acting as common service centres in villages and providing hundreds of facilities. The emergence of technology and digital India to take the services to farmers on a larger scale. This will also create new employment opportunities for the youth in the villages.”

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Modi also spoke about the various initiatives taken by his government in the past 10 years, including creation of a separate ministry for cooperatives. “The power of cooperation has a huge role in strengthening the foundation of agriculture and farming. This has led to a separate ministry for cooperation,” the Prime Minister said. “The world’s largest grain storage plan in cooperative sector launched today will result in thousands of warehouses and godowns in every corner of the country. This and other projects like computerization of PACS will give new dimensions to agriculture and modernize farming in the country.”

Small farmers are increasingly becoming entrepreneurs and even exporting their produce, Modi said. “Due to having a separate ministry, 8,000 FPOs (farmer producer organisations) out of a target of 10,000 FPOs are already functional in the country,” he said. “The benefits of cooperatives are now reaching fishermen and animal husbandry sectors.”

The government has a goal of setting up 200,000 cooperative societies in the coming years, he reiterated.

The central government had taken several steps to infuse new life into the cooperative sector, home minister Amit Shah said at the event. “PM Modi accepted the decades-long demand of people of the cooperative sector to form a separate ministry of cooperation. It is important to bring changes in cooperative sector with time. There is a need to keep cooperative sector relevant, modernise it and also make it transparent,” said Shah, who oversees the ministry that has undertaken more than 54 initiatives since its formation.

“The cooperative sector got a new life after almost 125 years due to PM Modi’s decision and will continue to serve the country for another 125 years,” he said.

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By August, the government will computerise all PACS, Shah said. The proposal for computerisation of PACS was submitted before the union cabinet on June 29, 2022.

“The PM had hope that despite being difficult, this project would be implemented soon. The trial run has been conducted, legacy data has been computerized. Every transaction will be computerized from now on. The computerisation of another 30,000 PACs will begin soon. Computerization of PACSs will not only bring transparency and modernize them but also create business opportunities,” Shah said.

This is part of the government’s vision of rejuvenating the cooperative sector and empowering farmers, he added.

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