Berhampur: Cooperatives minister Surya Narayan Patro on Friday released the guidelines of the Administrative Fund, which will determine the use of money to support the cooperative societies. The guidelines were released after they were approved by chief minister Naveen Patnaik.
The PACS Administrative Fund provides money to run cooperative societies. Odisha has 2,703 primary agriculture cooperative societies (PACS), which includes large-sized adivasi multipurpose cooperative societies (LAMPS).
Patro said, “The main purpose of creating the PACS Administrative Fund is to improve the efficiency of the societies and to bring about uniformity in their expenditure.”
The PACS Administrative Fund will be constituted at the level of the Odisha State Cooperative Bank (OSCB). It will have 30 per cent contribution of the paddy procurement commission of the PACS, five per cent of the net profit earned by OSCB every year, and five per cent of the net profit of the Central Cooperative Bank (CCB).
He, however, added that only the participating societies (who contribute to the PACS Administrative Fund) will be eligible to use the money collected by it.
Of the 2,703 cooperative societies in the state, more than 1,450 have agreed to participate in the fund, Patro added. “We hope more and more societies will come forward to participate in the scheme,” he further said.
Each society will get money from the OSCB on a half-yearly basis, in the months of June and December. A common pool committee will be constituted under the chairmanship of the president of the CCB to monitor the flow of funds to the societies.
The setting up of the PACS Administrative Fund is significant as the Odisha Cooperative Employees Federation (OCEF) — the members of which are mostly secretaries of the PACS — have been asking the state to treat them as government employees and give them a fixed monthly salary. The federation has been agitating since November 2017.
The employees of each society now get a salary as fixed by the managing board of the society, which, in turn, depends on the financial health of the society. The monthly salary of a society secretary varies from Rs 5,000 to Rs 30,000.
General secretary of OCEF, Digamber Nayak, said the newly created administrative fund was likely to help employees get salary as per the Sixth Pay Commission recommendations.