LENDING & CREDIT | Staff Reporter, India

Indian banks face more farm loan defaults

A massive drought is leading to a wave of farm loan defaults that threatens to boost the non-performing loans of Indian banks. The Reserve Bank of India, the central bank, however, claims Indian banks are resilient enough to weather the pressure on farm loans caused by the drought. “Whenever there is drought, there is a pressure (on farm loans). But we have sufficient rehabilitation measures so that banks can weather it out,” said RBI Deputy Governor K C Chakrabarty. He noted that India’s banking system has enough resilience and will be able to face the stress. The government will invoke the law and other schemes to meet the challenges of the \drought in several states. It noted that contingency plans are in place to help farmers replant alternate crops and to supply drinking water and fodder to farmers. Monsoon rains are relied upon to grow India’s crops but there was 20% less rain in June and July.

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