Odisha govt to provide insurance cover for seven major crops
BHUBANESWAR: The State Government on Wednesday decided to include seven major crops - paddy, groundnut, cotton, turmeric, ginger, red-gram (arhar) and maize - under Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) during 2017 kharif season. This was decided at the State Level Coordination (SLC) committee meeting on crop insurance held under the chairmanship of Chief Secretary AP Padhi in Secretariat here. Five crops - paddy, groundnut, cotton, ginger and turmeric were included under PMFBY in kharif-2016. The new crop insurance scheme of the NDA Government at Centre was implemented in the State in last kharif season. A total of 17.63 lakh farmers cultivating around 12.57 lakh hectares of land were brought into the insurance fold. A total sum of `68,881.61 crore was insured for the farmers. Around `530 crore were paid as premium to the insurance companies.
During this season, around `422 crore of claim was raised by farmers from all 30 districts that were divided into five clusters for the purpose of crop insurance.
About 80 per cent of the crop insurance claims of farmers in kharif-2016 have been settled under PMFBY and this was possible due to constant follow up at the ground level.
Issues relating to implementation of PMFBY in kharif-2017 were discussed at the meeting. As per earlier decisions, tender has already been called from insurance companies. The tenders are in the process of scrutiny and examination, said Agriculture Secretary Manoj Ahuja.
The Chief Secretary directed Agriculture Department to enhance the security net by bringing in more non-loanee farmers to the fold of crop insurance. Representatives of insurance companies were asked to disburse the insured sum to farmers within 15 days of the final crop cutting report.
Since crop cutting experiment was done through remote sensing and mobile apps, there should be no confusion in expeditiously settling the claims, Padhi said.
Odisha is a leading State in application of remote sensing and mobile application in crop cutting experiment. This was started from kharif-2016 with 33,000 live samples collected from various parts of the State.
Development Commissioner R Balakrishnan advised the department to do due diligence for identifying actual cultivators during settlement of insurance claims.