COOPERATIVES’ MEMBERSHIP AND WELL-BEING OF FARMERS: AN EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE, BASED ON INTEREST-FREE TRACTOR SCHEME FOR BARANI AREAS FROM DISTRICT NAROWAL, PAKISTAN
Publication Date : 31/10/2020
Cooperatives are autonomous voluntary associations of persons efficaciously addressing the common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations of the members, aiming at their well-being through collective action. These organizations work democratically, in line with cooperative principles and values to meet their objectives. Cooperative Department Government of Punjab has, time and again, been introducing different interventions to strengthen the cooperative societies so as to make them more vibrant player in national economy. Provision of interest-free (without markup) tractors to the members of Agricultural Cooperative Societies of Barani Areas of the Punjab Province is one of such initiatives. Barani Areas are the areas with rain-water cultivation in the province. These are 13 notified districts including District Narowal, the study site. The focus of present study is to evaluate well-being fetched by interest-free tractor scheme to the farmer members of the cooperatives. The study, first ever of its kind, was conducted through Focus Group Technique (FGT) by forming two focus groups FG1 (comprising cooperative field staff implementing the scheme) and FG2 (comprising beneficiary members of cooperatives) and data so collected was thematically analyzed using Nvivo v 10 which indicated that implementation of this intervention was highly welcomed and is considered as a meaningful measure for enhancement in the agricultural productivity of members of cooperatives besides poverty reduction, strengthening the cooperative movement and creating employment opportunities in the society.
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