New strategy to prevent misuse of crop insurance

ST Correspondent
Friday, 10 August 2018

State govt to make list of total area under cultivation; decision after 12 dists reported more areas affected than total cultivation

Mumbai: To prevent the misuse of crop insurance, the State government has decided to publish a village-wise list of farmers who have opted for crop insurance, mentioning the total area under cultivation and crop name. 

Recently, the government had faced embarrassment after 12 districts in the state reported more areas affected by pink bollworm pest on cotton than the total area under cultivation seeking compensation under National Disaster Relief Fund (NDRF).

This year, a total of 86 lakh farmers have opted for crop insurance scheme till the deadline of July 31. While last year, 83 lakh farmers were enrolled for the crop insurance. Out of which 45 lakh were benefited with the insured amount. 

The government distributed Rs 2,500 crore from the state under the crop insurance and Rs 3,400 crore has been distributed from the NDRF for pink worm.

During the distribution process, the government found that the insured crop area and the actual area did not match. The farmers who had not  cultivated cotton had also enrolled for the aid from National Disaster Relief Fund. 

“This year, we have decided to paste the list of farmers who have availed crop insurance at the gram panchayat office of every village. This will help us to scrutinise whether the correct details regarding the total area under cultivation and crop have been entered,” said an official from the agriculture department. 

“This year, the insurance amount will be debited to the farmers’ account directly as the entire process is online,” the officer said. 

The crop insurance will help the farmers to take risks. The areas depending on only rabi season now can opt for kharif crops as there is a guarantee of capital investment is safe. 

“If the cycle goes without any disturbances, the farmers need not depend on the crop loan every year as he will be able to repay the loan regularly,” said the officer. 

The premium of the crop insurance is 20 per cent on actual cost borne by the farmer and the farmers have to pay only 2 per cent of the premium. The rest is paid by the State and Central governments.

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