Home Knowledge Path to Progress....Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY)

Path to Progress....Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY)

by Madhavi Mihir Bhuta (National Executive Member, BJP Mahila Morcha)
Nov 19, 2020

Bharat, has been an Agro based country for centuries. Agriculture has been the main source of occupation for the majority of the population of Bharat.  Existence of the entire Bharatiya culture has revolved around agriculture.

Unfortunately, agriculture is largely dependent on natural and environmental forces. A failed rainy season lands the farmer in an acute tumult. Any natural calamities such as drought, floods or insect attack on farm  can ruin the farmer’s entire cultivation, causing unmanageable damage.

For years, farmers had no other option but to fold their hands and pray to Mother Nature for good monsoon. In case of disaster they would be compelled to borrow funds from private lenders and fall in the trap of never ending repayment process.

Political parties attempted to provide free-bees or pressurizing the Government in power to grant loan reversal, but We are well aware of the fact that freebies and loan reversals are not a positive practise as it causes colossal dent on the national  economy.

The government‘s duty is to provide better technological support to increase farm yield, provide efficient irrigation facilities, make available the seeds, fertilisers and pesticides at reasonable price as well as extend a well equipped technical knowledge for a better crop.

Even with all these supports, sometimes the Mother Nature plays its role and We humans are unable to reverse the devastating effects of a natural calamities.

The previous Governments hardly addressed the real issues. For the previous Governments, farmer’s helplessness turned into a political advantage. Granting freebies and reversing their loans turned farmers into a vote bank. Additionally, the agility to ensure necessary steps and precautions to protect the farm produce remained insignificant.

The farming situation in Bharat required pro-active steps from both, the farmers as well as the Government.

Hon. Prime Minister Shree Narendra Modiji took some determined initiatives to change the scenario.  The Modiji led Government launched Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) on the 13th January 2016. It is the new Crop Insurance Scheme in line with the One nation-One Scheme theme. It’s significant objective is - provision of Insurance Coverage and Financial support to the farmers in case of failure of any notified crop due to natural calamities, pests and diseases.

It also acts as a stabiliser for the income of farmers for continued farming and encourages farmers to adopt innovative and modern agricultural practises. Additionally, it ensures flow of credit to the agricultural sector.

Earlier, majority of farmers found it difficult to pay a steep premium to insure their crops.

The noteworthy highlight of PMFBY is the uniform premium of only 2% to be paid by the farmers for all Kharif crops and 1.5 % for all Rabi crops. In case of annual commercial and horticultural crops, the premium to be paid by the farmers would be only 5%.

The premium rate to be borne by the farmer is very low and the rest of the balance premium would be shouldered by the Government to provide full insured sum to the farmers.

There is no upper limit on Government subsidy. Even if balance premium is 90%, it would be borne by the Government. Earlier, the capping existed on the sum amount to be paid to the farmers to limit the Government‘s outgoing on the premium subsidy but now the capping has been removed and farmers are entitled to receive full amount of sum insured without any reduction.

The use of technology has ensured uploading of data of crop cutting to reduce the delays in claim payment to the farmers. Remote sensing is used to reduce the number of crop cutting experiments. All farmers growing notified crops in a notified area during the season who have insurable interest in the crop are eligible.

This scheme has been made voluntary for all farmers from Kharif 2020.

Farmers can apply Online for crop insurance at the link https//pmfby.gov.in/

The farmer can also apply for claim on toll free number 18002005142 or 18001209090. The farmer has to apply for claim within 72 hours of calamity and damage to their crops.

Prashant Deshmukh, a young farmer of 27 years, started farming in his village, Nandapur in Hingoli district in Maharashtra. His main crops were Turmeric, Soyabean, Green Gram, Red Gram and Sorghum. Last year, during Kharif 2019, Unseasonal rains and uncertainty of onset of Monsoon created havoc and he suffered losses. He got to know of the flagship mission of PMFBY by the Government of Bharat.

Under the PMFBY umbrella, he located the Farmitra  application by Bajaj Allianz General Insurance Company. The process was simple and basic and he could register his claim within 5-6minutes  and Prashant received intimation number within no time. The Insurance Company paid him satisfactory claim amount for his Soyabean crop loss.

The federal structure of our nation sometimes brings unnecessary delay in implementation of lucrative schemes that would be beneficial to common farmers. Tamilnadu Government initially did not join for several months in PMFBY programme, when it was initiated in 2016. Later, it decided to participate in the programme and Tamilnadu farmers could avail its benefits. But, due to this decision of TN Government, farmers were unable to enroll and claim benefits for Kharif season as it was late. In 2016, north east monsoon brought virtual wash out for the state, causing heavy damage and severe drought. The insurance scheme came handy during the Rabi season.

The pay out began in July 2017 and Tamilnadu farmers were the top most beneficiaries with Rs. 3500 Crores claims credited to TN farmers, followed by Rs. 2315 Crores compensation granted in Maharashtra and Rs. 2020 Croes in Madhya Pradesh, in 2017.

Hon. Prime Minister is a Man of the Soil. His vision is accompanied by the heart full of empathy towards the common people. Narendra Modiji can touch the cord of underprivileged Bharatiya’s urge to live with dignity and not be target for freebies only.

Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojna (PMFBY) grants poor but humble Bharatiya to tackle the calamity with dignity and self respect and be an important part of the growth engine.