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What Is Kurki?

Context:

Recently, A 65-year-old farmer, died by suicide outside the office of the Muktsar DC. He had been sitting on a dharna outside the administrative complex against kurki orders for his land based on a court case filed against him by the local moneylender for defaulting on loan payment.

Relevance:

GS II: Polity and Governance

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. What is kurki?
  2. How is kurki executed?
  3. Why has a total ban on the century-old kurki law not been achieved?
  4. What is the ground reality?

What is kurki?

  • Kurki means attachment of a farmer’s land, already pledged to the money lending institution or individual, in case of a loan default.
  • Apart from banks, private moneylenders, commission agents also get these decrees against farmers from time to time.
How is kurki executed?
  • Kurki orders are executed under Section 60 of Civil Procedure Code, 1908.
  • The land which is pledged by the farmer to the bank or money lender gets registered in their name.
  • In some cases, the land is auctioned as well.
  • The process begins after the money lender moves court to get kurki orders in case the farmer is unable to pay back his loan.
  • In kurki, attachment of farmer’s land as well as his tractor can be done as per the Section 60.

Why has a total ban on the century-old kurki law not been achieved?

  • A plea filed in the Punjab and Haryana High Court in 2018 sought complete ban on kurki.
  • However, the Punjab government in its affidavit stated that there was no need to ban kurki as relief was being given to farmers in terms of loan waiver, compensation etc.
  • Moreover, it stated that Section 60 of Civil Procedure Code, 1908 – under which kurki takes place — was over 110 years old and needed complete revision.

What is the ground reality?

  • Farmers point out that they are made to give post-dated cheques for loan, which are then used to get arrest orders issued in cheque bounce cases.
  • They have also accused money lenders of using pronotes signed by them to get kurki orders.
    • Pro-notes” (promissory notes) are written documents taken from farmers, and signed by them at the time of giving the loan.
  • In April 2022, over 2,000 arrest warrants were issued against farmers for non-payment of loans to cooperative societies and Punjab agriculture development banks.
  • Meanwhile, over Rs 3,200 crores is outstanding against farmers’ names in cooperative societies and Punjab agriculture development banks and over 60% of farmers haven’t paid even a penny for the past three years, sources revealed.

-Source: Indian Express


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