Govt identifies 1.24 lakh unrepresented panchayats to set up M-PACS

The center has identified over 1.24 lakh panchayats, where there is no PACS or dairy cooperative or both, where it will give top priority to facilitating the establishment of Multipurpose Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (M-PACS) in the next two years.

The sources said that out of the 269,364 gm panchayats in the country, there are 96,405 panchayats in which there is neither any PACS nor any dairy cooperative after the Ministry of Cooperation made efforts to establish a database. In addition, there are 27,954 panchayats in which the ministry found dairy cooperative presence but no PACS, the sources said.

Besides, there are 680 panchayats in the coastal areas, where the center sees potential for establishing fisheries cooperatives where there are none.

Since the Model Regulations were earlier circulated to the states with a request for their adoption, their acceptance will help in establishing more M-PACS in the country, which the Center has already made available to enable people’s cooperative societies to carry out many commercial activities. On Tuesday, I decided to let the 2000 PACS open Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Kendras.

“Unless the bylaws are amended, many of the existing PACS may not be able to expand their business even if the government allows them to do so. Creating the new PACS will be easier because all of them are expected to adopt the regulations model,” one expert said. The expert said that many of the current PACS have specific business areas mentioned in their internal regulations and are mostly limited to credit and agricultural activities.

Electronic workflow in progress

Meanwhile, Cooperation Minister Amit Shah reviewed the progress of computerization of the Office of the Central Registrar of Cooperative Societies. After the formation of a separate Ministry for Cooperation in July 2021, a number of steps have been taken to enhance the ease of doing business in the cooperative sector and the computerization of the CRCS office, which is responsible for administering the Multi-State Cooperative Societies (MSCS) Act, 2002. A software is being developed and a portal is scheduled to be launched before June 26th.

During the review meeting, Shah directed that youth should also be involved for better utilization and improved analytics of the portal through competitions organized by the CRCS office. The ministry said in a statement that the computerization project will greatly assist in the registration of the new MSCS and facilitate the work of the existing MSCS.

Computing will transform the CRCS office into complete paperless filing and processing of applications, automatic compliance with MSCS law and rules, digital communication and transparent processing.

The software will enable submission/service requests to be processed through CRCS office electronic workflow in a time bound manner. This will include provisions for OTP-based user registration, compliance checks for compliance with MSCS law and rules, listening through video conferencing, issuance of registration certificate and other communications electronically, the ministry said.