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Farmer gets notice for ₹3 lakh loan given to sugar factory

Rahul Bidave, a farmer from Borgaon village, Malshiras taluka, Solapur district stated that he received a notice from the ICICI bank’s Senapati Bapat road branch in Pune for the repayment of a loan of Rs 3.44 lakh.

pune Updated: Feb 23, 2018 16:48 IST
Shrinivas Deshpande
Shrinivas Deshpande
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,Farmer,notice for
The notice, dated February 12, 2018, states that a loan of Rs 3,44,100 was sanctioned “under the corporate arrangement with M/s Sadguru Sri Sri Sakhar Karkhana Ltd”, located at Atpadi, Sangli. (HT REPRESENTATIONAL PHOTO)

Farmers in Maharashtra who have not taken loans are now getting loan recovery notices. The Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana,an organisation representing farmers and looking out for their interests, revealed the same, with a ‘live’ case in Pune on Wednesday.

Rahul Bidave, a farmer from Borgaon village, Malshiras taluka, Solapur district stated that he received a notice from the ICICI bank’s Senapati Bapat road branch in Pune for the repayment of a loan of Rs 3.44 lakh.

The notice, dated February 12, 2018, states that a loan of Rs 3,44,100 was sanctioned “under the corporate arrangement with M/s Sadguru Sri Sri Sakhar Karkhana Ltd”, located at Atpadi, Sangli.

The notice, which Bidave displayed to this newspaper, stated: “As per the terms of the facility, you were required to repay the principal amount of the facility and also to pay interest and other charges thereon at the rate and in the manner set out therein.”

The bank demanded a payment of Rs 3,97,508 from the farmer towards the outstandings as of February 12, 2018.

Bidave says, “I was shocked when I got the notice because I never applied to ICICI bank for any kind of loan. In fact, I don’t even know where this branch is located.”

A sugarcane grower from Borgaon, Bidave says that he has four acres of land and has been growing cane on two acres. He dropped out of school in Class 7 to assist his family with the farming.

Bidave alleges that the loan was in fact applied for and taken by the Sadguru co-operative sugar factory.

ICICI’s assistant manager at the SB road branch, Gaurav Joshi, told this newspaper that the loan was sanctioned as per the set procedures.

When contacted, the deputy chairman of Sadguru Sri Sri Sakhar Karkhana Ltd, Balasaheb Patil confirmed that it was the sugar cooperative which had borrowed money from ICICI Bank. “Yes we borrowed Rs 11 crore from ICICI last year against an electricity generation scheme of the factory’s. The Rs 11 crore includes money against Bidave’s name. However, because of losses in the season we have not repaid it. We are now hopeful of repaying the entire amount within the next few days.”

Shetkari Sanghatana’s spokesperson Yogesh Pande said the matter calls for investigation as many more farmers are suspected to have been kept in the dark about loans taken in their names. He said the sanghatna will approach ICICI and demand a detailed enquiry into this case and if necessary, the matter would be raised with the chief minister by party president Raju Shetti.

First Published: Feb 22, 2018 15:54 IST