Co-op societies need to be managed professionally: Deshmukh

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 22 Sep 2017 09:34:23


Business Bureau,

Pre-liberalisation, in Maharashtra alone, there were more than 4 lakh self-help groups (SHGs) and 22,000 co-operative societies. Due to internal politics, vested interest and mismanagement, more than 60 per cent of the SHGs and co-operative societies closed down and the remaining are facing financial stress, said Subhash Deshmukh, Maharashtra Minister for Co-operation while speaking at the workshop on ‘Marketing and packaging for co-operative societies’ at Scientific Hall, Laxmi Nagar on Thursday.

The workshop was organised by Maharashtra Rajya Sahakari Sangh Maryadit, Pune to celebrate completion of 100 years of existence in association with Vidarbha Co-operative Marketing Federation Limited, Nagpur.
Deshmukh continued that in order to sort out various problems in co-operative societies the State Government had initiated ‘Atal Mahapanan Yojana Abhiyan.’ The scheme allows co-operative societies to make value addition in agriculture marketing by providing facility for grading, improving standards, processing, packaging and branding.

State Government wants to provide proper training to the farmers so they adopt new alternative marketing channels to strengthen balance sheets of co-operative societies and farmers to realise better realisation for their produce, he pointed out. The Minister said, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis first wants the villages to be financially strong so that ‘Make in Maharashtra’ can become a reality.

He said, the Government is introducing new reforms in agriculture to help farmers get better returns for their produce. Farmers should not wait for Government help and bail them out by way of loan waivers but should work hard and look for opportunities which are everywhere. “If all the farmers in a village unite, make a product which is locally grown and add value by improving its standard using latest technology, processing, cleaning, branding, advertising and marketing, they can earn huge profit,” he added.

“Co-operative societies need to be managed in a professional manner,” he suggested. They can also tie up with super markets, form joint ventures with private companies and also sell products on-line.

State Government wants to stop farmers suicides in Marathwada. “For this there is a need for proper training and awareness among the farmers about the opportunities available through co-operative movement,” he suggested.
Anil Sole, MLC, said that co-operative societies need to work with a mission, honesty and passion to succeed. Also timely action by the Government was required to help societies whenever there was policy change. State Government should provide umbrella funding to co-operative societies in the form of share capital when required.

Ashish Deshmukh, MLA, said that co-operative societies should introduce professionalism and corporate culture into their working to survive in a competitive environment.
Ganesh Shinde, Brand Ambassador of ‘Atal Mahapanan Yojana’ presented a short film on the marketing and processing of co-operative societies. He said that the State Government had introduced the ‘Atal Mahapanan Yojana’ to strengthen co-operative societies which were facing financial burden.

Rajaram Dhege, OSD of Maharashtra Rajya Sahakari Sangh Maryadit, Pune, also spoke on co-operative marketing and capacity building training. More than 12,000 representatives of co-operative societies from 352 talukas have been given training, he said. Advocate Suhasrao Tidke, Chairman of Maharashtra Rajya Sahakari Sangh Maryadit, Pune, said that the organisation was established in 1918 and celebrating 100 years of existence.

Present were Dr Rajendra Shingne, Chairman of Vidarbha Co-op Marketing Federation Ltd, Nagpur, Uttam Indalkar, CEO of Maharashtra Rajya Sahakari Sangh Maryadit, S Haribabu, MD of Vidarbha Co-op Marketing Federation Nagpur and Sudhakar Kohale, MLA were present.