Agriculture Current Affair 4 April 2020

Plantation sector seeks govt support to pay wages

Kochi/Bengaluru, April 3 The 21-day lockdown has pushed the plantation sector into a precarious situation. With no revenue, the managements say, they can ill afford to pay wages during the period, and are looking for support from the government to overcome the crisis.

The plucking of tea in many plantations has come to a standstill and the operations are expected to resume only after 75-90 days. It will take considerable time and labour to bring the estates back to active production levels and, till then, cash flows will be under stress, said industry representatives.

Centre asks States to ensure smooth harvesting, sowing operations

The Union government on Friday asked states and union territories to ensure smooth harvesting and sowing operations, saying agricultural activities were exempted from the 21-day lockdown enforced to combat coronavirus.

In a communication to all States and UTs, Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla, said the farming operations by farmers, farmworkers and procurement of agricultural productions are exempted from the nationwide lockdown.

Bhalla said the Home Ministry had allowed agricultural operations, keeping in view the harvesting and sowing season.

CreditAccess Grameen to observe moratorium on loans

Bengaluru-based CreditAccess Grameen Ltd will observe moratorium on principal repayments to its lenders between March 30 and May 31, 2020. But the microfinance institution said it has made a prudent decision to continue to pay interest to its lenders during the moratorium period.

Simultaneously, the company emphasised that it has sufficient cash balance of ₹530 crore as on March 31, to sustain business operations over a reasonable period of time.

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