The enrolment of farmers under Centre’s flagship crop insurance scheme, Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) for Kharif-2020 season is going on in full swing in various states and union territories (UTs) in the country. The Centre has made enrolment free for all the farmers who only need to pay premium amount. Farmers can get their food crops, cereals and oilseeds, insured at a minimal premium rate of 2 percent of sum insured, and commercial and horticulture crops at 5 percent of sum insured in Kharif -2020. The remaining premium will be subsidised by the Central government and states. The cut-off date for ongoing Kharif 2020 season in few states and UTs may end by July 31, 2020.
Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, Narendra Singh Tomar has appealed to the farmers to get enrolled under PMFBY and requested all farmers to protect themselves against financial loss due to crop failures and damages as a result of natural disasters.
The scheme ensures protection of crop loss for entire cropping cycle, from pre-sowing to post-harvest activities. Farmers are encouraged to enrol for the scheme at the earliest to avail the coverage against prevented sowing due to any unforeseen calamity. In addition, there is comprehensive risk coverage against drought, floods, inundation, landslides unseasonable rainfall, hailstorm, natural fires, and cyclone for the standing crop as well as coverage against hailstorm, cyclone and unseasonal rainfall for post-harvest crop.
In order to address some previous challenges in the implementation of the crop insurance scheme, in February 2020, the government had approved revamping of PMFBY . The government made the scheme voluntary for all the farmers from Kharif-2020 onwards. Earlier, the scheme was compulsory for all the loanee farmers. Now, farmers with loan dues can opt out of the scheme by submitting a simple declaration to their bank branch seven days before the cut-off date of enrolment.
Any farmer who wishes to get enrolled under PMFBY should contact his nearest bank, Primary Agricultural Credit Society (PACS), Common Service Centre (CSC)/ Village Level Entrepreneurs (VLEs), Office of Agriculture department, representatives of insurance companies or directly online through the National Crop Insurance Portal (NCIP) and crop insurance app
Farmers need to carry Aadhaar number, bank passbook, land record or tenancy agreement, and self-declaration certificate to complete the enrolment process. This season, all farmers enrolled under the scheme will be intimated about the status of their application through regular SMS on their registered mobile numbers.
In a bid to ensure hassle-free enrolment of farmers, the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare provided training to 29,275 officials from banks, insurance companies, Common Service Centres (CSC), State Level Bankers’ Committee (SLBC), Village Level Entrepreneurs (VLEs), State and District level Agriculture and ATMA officials among others. Besides this, insurance companies have also provided training to different stakeholders. The ministry also aims at providing training to 600 executives of Kisan Call Centres.
The ministry has taken a slew of steps to create awareness among the farmers about the scheme. Different insurance companies in cooperation with the ministry and state agriculture departments have launched a campaign across the country. Different activities such as local level awareness meetings, display of banners and posters at important locations, distribution of pamphlets, IEC vans, advertisements in local and national newspapers, mass media campaign among others, are being conducted to create awareness at the grassroots level.
The PM Fasal Bima Yojana is designed to protect farmers from natural calamities, pest or insect attack and diseases, and help them get back on their feet by providing financial support through claim settlement. All farmers are encouraged to enrol under PMFBY to avail the benefits of crop insurance as a protection against crop loss due to unforeseen natural calamities.