Mumbai, Sep 23 (IANS): Union Minister for Home and Cooperation, Amit Shah, said on Saturday that the 120-year-old cooperative sector can boost India’s economy and development, and give mass production and mass employment to the people, here on Saturday.
Delivering the Laxmanrao Inamdar Memorial Lecture organised by the University of Mumbai and Sahakar Bharti, Shah focused on the cooperative sector Amul, and said that inspired by the model, over 3.60 million women are now engaged in milk-related businesses across India worth Rs 60,000 crore by just investing around Rs 100 each.
After the cooperative movement started in India in 1904, in no time it spread to Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and central India, he said.
Post-Independence, cooperatives, which were in "everyone's interest" made a good effort to strike a balance between the socialist and capitalist models, which envisaged the state or the market controls, the minister said.
“The cooperative model is very suitable for India because along with economic development, we also need employment, mass production and production by the masses… thus help provide jobs to every person in the country. Only the best combination of the cooperative sector with the institutions related to the nation’s economy can take India forward,” Shah said.
He noted that many models of cooperatives took shape in the country and it became a major medium for rural development and the agricultural sector, particularly in the 1960s, as it’s a humanity-centric model.
Shah said that today, the country has over 8.50 lakh cooperative societies with 30 crore members and 93,000 PACs, there are 200,000 milk societies, some include the world famed IFFCO, KRIBHCO, Amul, while 12 cooperative banks rank among the 300 top-ranked cooperative societies globally.
Cooperation is an area in which “thousands of people with small capital can join to compete with the industries with big capital”, help the progress of the country, give a fillip to woman-led development, arrest rural-urban migration and make the local economy self-sufficent on all counts, Shah said.
Present on the occasion were Maharashtra Governor Ramesh Bais, Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, his Cabinet colleagues, university officials and other dignitaries.