Gujarat's cooperative movement is a matter of pride: Home Minister Amit Shah

Union Home Minister Amit Shah: Union Home and Cooperation Minister Amit Shah, while addressing a large gathering of milk producers in Gujarat, said that the cooperative movement in Gujarat is a matter of pride. He also mentioned how some ministers of other countries were surprised by the business figures of Amul Dairy Cooperative brand. The previous Congress-led government at the Center ignored the requests of the leaders of the cooperative sector.


Godhra: Union Home and Cooperation Minister Amit Shah said on Sunday that the cooperative movement in Gujarat is a matter of pride. He also mentioned how some ministers of other countries were surprised by the business figures of Amul Dairy Cooperative brand. Shah was addressing a large gathering of milk producers in Panchmahal district here after Godhra-based Panchamrit Dairy digitally inaugurated projects, including two plants set up in Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh and Malegaon in Maharashtra, among others.


The minister said that the leaders of the country and abroad are shocked when they tell them about Amul or the Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation. GCMMF is an organization of 18 district milk cooperative unions in the state with 36.4 lakh members.


Shah said, "Two ministers from Australia and the Netherlands told me that they cross-checked the data provided by me (on Amul) on a website to see if it was correct or not. Such a huge cooperative movement… a business of Rs 60,000 crore through the cooperative movement, no one could have imagined this.”


He said that the previous Congress-led government at the Center ignored the requests of the leaders of the cooperative sector. Shah said that let alone help, the previous Congress government also failed to create such an environment where there is no injustice to the cooperatives.


The Union Minister said, "Prime Minister Narendra Modi has formed the Ministry of Cooperation to give priority to this sector. He increased the budget for cooperatives seven times. Removed certain taxes in sugar sector, reduced MAT (Minimum Alternative Tax) from 18 per cent to 15 and reduced surcharge on cooperative organizations from 12 per cent to seven per cent.


The minister hit out at the opposition Congress for not providing constitutional status to the Other Backward Classes (OBCs) in 70 years of rule, saying the Narendra Modi-led government did it through the 123rd Amendment (in the Constitution). Shah said that many welfare schemes of the Center are for OBCs, Dalits and Adivasis.


He said that the Center has come up with a project to computerize cooperative societies and link them directly with the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), for which a provision of Rs 6,500 crore has been made. Shah said, "I want to tell you as the Minister of Cooperation that a big revolution is going to happen in the sector in the next five years under the leadership of Modi ji through the Ministry of Cooperation."


Shah said that many steps are being taken in this direction, including database creation, training, tax reduction and reforms in existing laws. The Union Minister said that the projects he inaugurated for Panchamrut Dairy would strengthen the cooperative movement in Panchmahal, Mahisagar and Dahod districts of Gujarat.


Shah also inaugurated the newly constructed building of Panchmahal District Co-operative Bank in Godhra and started mobile ATM van service for people living in rural areas of the district.