Chief Minister Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu said that the state government has taken several measures to strengthen the economy of the horticulturists of the state. He said that the state government was conducting a legal study to implement universal cartons in order to make the apple growers of the state economically empowered.
Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu was addressing a delegation of Theog assembly constituency, led by Devender Shyam, Chairman, Himachal Pradesh Co-operative Bank, which met him here today.
The Chief Minister said that the state government has taken various steps for setting up Controlled Atmosphere (CA) stores, so that the horticulturists could get remunerative prices of their produce, thereby protecting them from any kind of exploitation of middlemen. Apart from this, it was also being considered to set up an apple-based distillery, which would provide an additional source of income to the horticulturists as they could sell under size and rotten apples for winery products, he added.
He said that the state government in its first Green Budget, made a provision of 50 per cent subsidy for the purchase of e-bus, e-truck and e-taxi besides giving 40 per cent subsidy for setting up solar power projects ranging from 250 KW to 2 MW capacity in the State. He asked the Himachal Pradesh Co-operative Bank to provide loans for both these schemes liberally, so that the youth could get self-employment avenues and play a pivotal role in realizing government’s resolve of Green Energy State. Both these flagship programs could bring a radical change in the lives of the youth and could also generate income for their families, said the Chief Minister and added that the tangible results of these programs of the government would be visible after two years.
He said that the bank should work for the welfare of the farmers by providing generous loans to them for agriculture, fisheries and horticulture sectors, so that the rural economy of the state could also be strengthened. He said that the government was taking appropriate decisions and working with commitment for the welfare of every section of the society. A provision has been made in the budget to provide financial assistance of Rs 1.50 lakh to 7000 single women for construction of the house, as well as loan at one per cent interest to meritorious poor students for higher education. He said that in order to increase its income, the government has auctioned liquor vends and imposed water cess on the state’s hydropower projects.
The Chief Minister said that the party workers were being given due respect in the present government and Theog area has been provided due importance in the government. While Kuldeep Singh Rathore of the Congress party is MLA from Theog constituency, Devendra Shyam has been made the Chairman of the Himachal Pradesh Co-operative Bank, while Kehar Singh Khachi has been appointed vice-chairman of the Forest Corporation, he added.
Chairman, Himachal Pradesh Co-operative Bank, Devendra Shyam thanked the Chief Minister and assured him that he would work with full honesty and integrity to come up to the expectations of people as well as the Chief Minister. He said that the bank would join hands in the steps taken towards the green budget of the state government. He said that the bank will allocate a budget of Rs. 500 crore for the purchase of e-vehicles and solar energy projects. He said that every possible effort would be made to strengthen the bank and the cooperative movement.
MLA Harish Janartha and Vice President, Himachal Pradesh Forest Corporation, Kehar Singh Khachi and other dignitaries were also present on the occasion.