Punjab Government agreed to direct transfer of money in Farmers account

On Thursday, Manpreet Singh Badal, Finance Minister Punjab said that the state government has no choice but to agree and implement the center’s instruction on direct bank transfer (DBT) of MSP to farmers from the current season.

Punjab FM said the center has rejected the state’s demand to give more time to implement DBT of MSP to farmers after having a long discussion with Piyush Goyal (Union Food Minister) on the issue.

At present, the MSP to farmers in Punjab is paid through arhtiya’s rather than direct bank transfer to farmer’s accounts in other states. Due to this farmers never gets the price they deserve for their crops.

Direct Bank Transfer or Farmers in Punjab

As per the reports, Punjab FM told, “The GoI has asked us to implement the DBT for farmers. We had asked for more time because here in Punjab there is a traditional arhtiya’s system but GoI rejected our demand. “

He also added, the State government has no choice but to implement the DBT for farmers from the current season and a new mechanism will be worked out.

Justifying the reason for dismissing Punjab’s demand, FM Badal said the GoI said that the Food Stock Procured belongs to the center and the state is just an agent they should make payment directly to farmers.

 Who are Arhtiyas?

Arhtiyas are the middleman or commission agents in Mandi who facilitate the transaction between farmers and buyers. Farmers bring their crops in mandi to arhtiya’s shop, where the crop is cleaned, weighed, and filled into sacks, and then sold to buyers through an auction. For this, they charge the farmers and buyers a fee. As per the report, there are around 152 major mandis in Punjab in which there are around 27,000 registered Arhtiyas.

Arhatiya in Punjab Mandi

It is also said that Arhtiyas were traditional moneylenders and after the market gets regulated they came into agriculture. Arhtiyas are an easy source to lend money to farmers they credit money on a high-interest rate of 15-24 percent on an average against the 8 percent charged by banks for the purchase of seeds; fertilizers etc. during the season and also for domestic needs like wedding and vehicle purchase etc.

Why Government of India wants to eliminate the Arhtiya system?

In Punjab, Arhtiyas have majorly been responsible for farmer’s suicide. As per the reports, about 40-45 percent of farmers are dealing with the same arhtiya for more than one generation, due to the never-ending cycle of debt. In response to this Government of India is trying to make the system more transparent by making the procurement agencies pay directly in the farmer’s account. This would make farmers repay according to their capacity.

Due to the Center’s DBT Scheme, arhtiya’s are in fear that soon they will be thrown out of work due to direct transactions between farmers and corporate firms. But if we believe the experts, they say that Arhtiya’s have extensive capital and networking among farmers. Even if corporate firms come to the picture in Punjab, they will hire arhtiya’s only for their groundwork.


Aishaan Sinha

One thought on “Punjab Government agreed to direct transfer of money in Farmers account

  • Hope now farmers agitation would wind up.
    As it was being said this to be an agitation of Arhatiyas to protect their interest of ruling over farmers. DBT is a very crucial weapon to fight with middlemen corruption,who keep poora under their clutches.


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