All you need to know about the new Crop Insurance Scheme
The Agriculture Ministry has proposed an average premium of upto 2.5 per cent for foodgrain and oilseeds crops and 5 per cent for horticulture crops.
PTI New Delhi Last Updated: January 7, 2016 | 12:37 IST
The Agriculture Ministry has proposed an average premium of upto 2.5 per cent for foodgrain and oilseeds crops and 5 per cent for horticulture crops. (Photo: Reuters)
Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh made a presentation to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday on the proposed new Crop Insurance Scheme. Besides premium rate, the discrepancies in the existing scheme were discussed.
The meeting was attended by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Home Minister Rajnath Singh, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, Food Minister Ram Vilas Paswan, Urban Development Minister Venkaiah Naidu and Road Minister Nitin Gadkari. Rural Development Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh, Tribal Affairs Minister Jual Oram, Social Justice Minister Thaawar Chand Gehlot, Chief Economic Advisor Arvind Subramanian, Niti Aayog chief among other senior officials from Finance and Agriculture Ministries were also present.
Here is all you need to know about the proposed new Crop Insurance Scheme:
The Agriculture Ministry has proposed an average premium of upto 2.5 per cent for foodgrain and oilseeds crops and 5 per cent for horticulture crops. However, some sections within the Cabinet want a uniform premium of 1-1.5 per cent for all crops.
The Centre would incur an expenditure of Rs 8,000 crore annually if a premium for farmers was fixed at 2.5 to 5 per cent depending on the risky crops and if 50 per cent of the total crop area of 194 million hectare was insured.
But fixing a uniform premium rate of 1.5 per cent for all crops for 100 per cent coverage would increase the Centre's financial burden to Rs 11,000 crore, which the Finance Ministry officials said was a major concern.
The government intends to implement the scheme from the forthcoming kharif season from June.
The proposal on the new crop insurance scheme, moved by the Agriculture Ministry, was once discussed in a Cabinet meeting last year, but the decision was deferred in the wake of differences over the premium rate.
In the existing Modified National Agricultural Insurance Scheme (MNAIS), the average premium rate for farmers has been kept at 5.5 per cent, though the premium rate for high risky crops is as high as 40 per cent.
Last year, only 27 per cent of the crop area was insured which cost Rs 3,150 crore to the national exchequer.
Besides lower premium rate, the proposed Crop Insurance Scheme aims to settle insurance claims faster by assessing the crop damage using modern technologies like remote sensor.
The Agriculture Ministry has already launched a portal on crop insurance and a mobile app as part of the digital India campaign.