Kerala imposes moratorium on seizures related to loans taken by farmers, fishermen till Dec 31

Indian rupee
A man displays new 2000 Indian rupee banknotes after withdrawing them from a State Bank of India (SBI) branch in Kolkata, India, November 10, 2016. Reuters/Rupak De Chowdhuri/Files

Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala government has decided to impose a moratorium till December 31 on distraint proceedings against farmers, fishermen and small traders in connection with the loans taken by them, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said on Wednesday.

Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, he said the Cabinet has decided to declare the moratorium in view of the tidal attacks, prevailing COVID-19 pandemic and the damage to crops due to the rains in the State.

He said the Cabinet has decided to speak also to the Reserve Bank of India and State-level bankers' association to extend till December 31 the moratorium on loans availed from nationalised banks, private banks and non-banking financial institutions.

Besides that, the Cabinet decided to institute a State-level award on the lines of the central government's Padma Awards, the Chief Minister said.

The new award would be called Kerala Awards and would comprise three categories -- 'Kerala Jyothi', 'Kerala Prabha' and 'Kerala Shree', he said.

Vijayan said that 'Kerala Jyothi' would be awarded to one person, 'Kerala Prabha' to two persons and 'Kerala Shree' to five, every year and would be awarded on the basis of the recommendations of two committees.

The Department of Public Administration would invite nominations in April every year after announcing the number and details of the awards and the recipients would be announced on November 1 - formation day of the State of Kerala, he said.

The award ceremony would be held at the Raj Bhavan, he added.  

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