Much to the relief of dairy farmers attached to nearly 10,000 cooperative milk societies across Tamil Nadu, the dues of Rs 200 crore is likely to be disbursed to them within a month.
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Revealing this, official sources in Aavin said the disbursal would start after completing enquiries into the functioning of some societies and their presidents. The probes were taken up following allegations that accounts in many societies were tardily maintained.

Also, as most dairy farmers survive on milk society payment, some cooperative society presidents would advance them an amount at a higher interest than what the presidents have to pay to the cooperative banks for loans availed for this purpose. “This enables the presidents to reap a profit,” said an official.

Officials mandate payment of all money into farmers’ bank accounts, which faced resistance from a section of society presidents who felt that it would erode their influence if direct cash transfer was allowed, the official added.

“They also give the excuse that if such accounts were opened and money deposited, it would be diverted by the bank to the jewel loan dues of the dairy farmer concerned,” he added.

The collusion of Deputy Registrars (dairy) in this issue was also being probed, said the official, adding that steps were being taken to ensure that such hindrances were removed and dues deposited into the bank accounts of individual farmers.

Reacting to the decision to pay their dues within a month, dairy farmers expressed happiness, noting that despite rules stipulating that payment should be made every fortnight, they receive it only after 45 days and even three months in some districts. “Sometimes dairy farmers have also been forced to agitate to get the pending money,” said Ramanathan, a farmer from Vellore.

Officials were also checking farmers who supplied more than 50 litres milk daily to see if they really owned cows necessary to supply this quantity or whether they were buying from private parties and offloading into the society to get society benefits.

The giant Holstein cow with spots arranged as a map of the world is designed to celebrate the farmer-owned cooperative’s diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts.

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