Hyderabad: SBI, convener of the Telangana State Level Bankers Committee,today said they have requested RBI for more cash in view of the government launching distribution of about 59 lakh cheques to farmers under a scheme,from tomorrow.

Under the 'Rythu Bandhu' scheme for farmers, government provides input costs by giving them Rs 4,000 each for every acre through specially printed cheques. The scheme will be launched by Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao tomorrow in Karimnagar district.

Swaminathan, Chief General Manager, State Bank of India (Hyderabad Circle), said they expect one third of the total of Rs 5,700 crore that is required now, within a week and the remaining amount thereafter. The Government has allotted Rs 12,000 crore for the scheme in the budget.

Swaminathan said over 59 lakh cheques have been printed by eight participating banks led by the SBI and handed over to the government for distribution. Expenses for printing the cheques would be reimbursed by the government, he said.

"The aggregate amount is over Rs 5,700 crore. For encashment of cheques we requested government and RBI to make the cash available adequately. Telangana is already a deficit state in terms of currency. This is a very unique and one time requirement of cash within a short time frame," he said.

"They (RBI) are providing us some cash at this point of time, which is one third of the requirement for all the eight banks, this week itself," Swaminathan told PTI. SBI alone printed about 26 lakh cheques of the total of 59 lakh, all of which were handed over to the government, which is ready to distribute them to farmers, he added.

Swaminathan said this was a mammoth exercise in terms of printing cheques, moving them to Hyderabad and to the Government. "...And they will be taken to villages.The government will reimburse the cheque printing expenses, the SBI official said.

He said there was no constraint of cash for the scheme and they were ready handle the load. (PTI)