Maiden State to gift 10,119 tractors for SHGs in 26,000 villages on a single day
BY OUR STAFF REPORTER
GUWAHATI, Dec 7: Come Sunday and Assam will become the first State in the country to distribute over 10,000 tractors to self-help groups (SHGs) on a single day.
Coinciding with the Martyrs’ Day, the State government will distribute 10,119 tractors to SHGs from as many villages under its ambitious Mukhyamantri Samagra Gram Unayan Yojana (MSGUY).
As decided last year, the Government will provide one tractor to each SHG of the State’s total 26,000 villages. While 70% subsidy will be borne by the State Agriculture department, 20% will be loan component and the remaining 10% will have to be provided by the SHG as seed money.
Further, unlike other previous government schemes, the government will not procure any tractor directly. The SHGs will procure tractors of any brand as per their requirement.
Meanwhile, while 10,119 tractors will be formally given away to as many SHGs on its inaugural day on Sunday under the MSGUY, the remaining SHGs will be given the farm equipment in subsequent phases.
Addressing a press conference here on Thursday, State Agriculture Minister Atul Bora said MSGUY is Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal’s dream project. “On 10th December 1979, Khargeswar Talukdar became the first martyr in the Assam Agitation, for which we observe the day as Martyrs’ Day in memory of all those who gave their lives for a foreigner-free Assam. Our Chief Minister will commence formal distribution of tractors on that day as a mark of respect to all such noble souls,” he explained.
Bora said tractors will be given away by the Agriculture department in the first phase only to those SHGs from which it had received one application in this regard. He also said that there are 7,025 villages from which the department has not received any application. The matter will be examined in due course, he added.
On the other hand, despite the State being deluged with four spells of floods this year, paddy produce in 2017-18 is expected to peak 88.42 lakh metric tonne. Sharing the figure, the Agriculture Minister said this will be more than the estimated 83.93 lakh metric tonne in 2016-17. In 2015-16, the total paddy output in the State was 80.03 lakh metric tonne, he informed the media.