Union Home and Cooperation Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday urged all the cooperatives across the country to register themselves on the Government e-Market (GeM) portal, which he said is the best way to promote and expand them.
Minister Shah made the remarks at the event of the e-launch of onboarding of cooperatives on the GeM portal, a first-ever initiative as so far GeM platform was not enabled for registration of cooperative societies as buyers on platform.
Now, all eligible cooperatives across the country will be able to start placing orders on the GeM-- which is a one-stop procurement system for goods and services.
The GeM has been set up as the national procurement portal to provide an end-to-end online marketplace for Central and state government departments and ministries as well as Public Sector Units (PSUs) for common-use goods and services in a transparent and efficient manner.
Speaking on the importance of GeM and its benefit, the home minister said, "The 'Quit India Movement' jolted the British Empire on this day (August 9) when Mahatma Gandhi gave the slogan. India finally gained independence on 15th August 1947. As we celebrate 'Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav' this year, the doors to the GeM (portal) are being opened for cooperative societies."
Shah also appealed all the Cooperatives to prepare themselves to register on the GeM portal. "Accept the GeM. There is no better way to promote a cooperative than the GeM."
About 8.54 lakh cooperatives in India with about 29 crore members purchasing goods and services from the open market needed a platform to avail competitive prices through a transparent and efficient process.
The members will benefit through the economical prices availed through GeM with access to sellers from all over the country. GeM is open for all government buyers, such as central ministries, state departments, public sector enterprises, autonomous bodies, panchayats and now Cooperatives.
To date, approximately 61,851 government buyers and over 48.75 lakh sellers and service providers are registered on GeM and they have listed over 45 lakh products in over 10,000 product and 288 service categories. Over 1.08 crore orders worth Rs 2,78,504 crore have been fulfilled on the GeM platform.
Mentioning that 289 of the 589 shortlisted cooperatives as eligible for onboarding have registered themselves on the GeM since this morning, Shah also appealed to all the Cooperatives to not only sell but also purchase on the GeM portal.
He further ensured "now there will be no second class treatment with the cooperative sector", but clarified that "we will have to change to expand the cooperatives and promote them".
Further, home minister Shah stressed the need to bring transparency in the purchase in the Cooperatives, saying "there is no better way to bring transparency in purchases than GeM", and said, "the world will see how transparency through GeM brings changes in next five years".
The minister also said that around 25 to 30 initiatives have been taken by the cooperative ministry, pointing out the cooperative is limited to 32 sectors but the government has targeted to expand it to 80 sectors for which a database is being prepared.
Union Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal and President of the National Cooperative Union of India (NCUI) Dileep Sanghani were also present at the event organised by the Ministry of Cooperation, the NCUI and GeM.
Recently, the Ministry of Cooperation in its advisory had made the NCUI the nodal agency to facilitate the onboarding of cooperatives, coordinating with GeM authorities and handholding the cooperatives in the process of onboarding.
NCUI has compiled a list of cooperatives with turnover or deposits of Rs 100 crore and forwarded this information to GeM for starting the onboarding process.
The Union Cabinet under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Modi approved on June 1 to expand the mandate for GeM to allow cooperatives to procure goods and services through GeM as buyers. Cooperatives will not only get competitive prices through an open and transparent process but can also procure from about 45 lakh authenticated sellers and service providers available across the country on a single platform. Besides, this portal will lead to saving of time and reduction of administrative costs for cooperatives.
The onboarding of cooperative societies and banks will be done in a phased manner. In the first phase, cooperative societies and banks with turnover and deposits of more than Rs 100 crore as per the latest audited financial statement and with a grade auditing have been taken up for onboarding. (ANI)