Punjab to give boost to cooperative societies in 2009

December 29th, 2008 - 9:04 pm ICT by IANS  

Chandigarh, Dec 29 (IANS) To give a boost to cooperative societies in Punjab, the state government has decided to celebrate the year 2009 as the ‘Year of Cooperatives’.”We are aiming for a complete overhaul of the system and give more autonomy to these (cooperative) societies. We have plans to start various developmental schemes for the cooperative societies in 2009,” Minister of Cooperation Kanwaljit Singh told reporters here Monday.

He added that over five million people were associated with the state’s cooperative societies. “We are starting a special enrolment drive, targeting an increase of 25 percent in the membership in 2009.”

There are over 15,000 cooperatives in Punjab that include around 4,500 primary agriculture cooperative societies (PACs) and around 3,000 milk societies.

“The PACs working in the villages would be converted into multipurpose societies in the next five years. We will invest Rs.220 million for their upgradation in the first phase. This will generate 100,000 jobs in rural Punjab,” Kanwaljit said.

The state cooperative department is also launching a project for the replacement of incandescent bulbs in the households with energy-efficient compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs).

“We will replace the existing lamps with CFLs in a phased manner. In the first phase, we have identified 60 villages for this purpose. We will supply the CFLs through a central agency to ensure the right price to the customers,” the minister said.

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