Feb 19, 2016 10:51 AM IST | Source: PTI

New insurance scheme has nothing for farmers: Swaraj Abhiyan

"At the ground level, PMFBY and the Guidelines will make no difference to the farmer-as is prevalent now, the insurance premium will be deducted without the farmers' knowledge, consent and information and when there is crop loss, the same yield based assessment arbitrarily decided by patwaris will apply," Abhiyan added.

New insurance scheme has nothing for farmers: Swaraj Abhiyan

Criticising the new crop insurance scheme launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Swaraj Abhiyan said it will make no difference to the farmers as premium will be deducted without their knowledge and on crop loss, compensation would be calculated in the same yield-based assessment by patwaris arbitrarily.

It accused the government of coming up with Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) and its guidelines without due consultations and, claimed it was a tweaked version of the two existing schemes, NAIS (National Agricultural Insurance Scheme) and the MNAIS (Modified NAIS).

"Having sensed the political cost of being seen as anti- famer, the Modi Sarkar is window-dressing its image through symbolic palliative measures like PMFBY, which do not address the fundamental causes of farm crisis in India.

"The most anti-farmer government in history of the country is now applying heavy-makeup on its anti-farmer face by holding Government sponsored kisan sammelans, pretending to be friend-of-the-farmer," Swaraj Abhiyan said in a statement.

"At the ground level, PMFBY and the Guidelines will make no difference to the farmer-as is prevalent now, the insurance premium will be deducted without the farmers' knowledge, consent and information and when there is crop loss, the same yield based assessment arbitrarily decided by patwaris will apply," Abhiyan added.

It further said the scheme will leave farmers mercy of the administration while the insurance companies will laugh all the way to the bank.

"There is nothing historic and path-breaking in the guidelines or PMFBY as claimed by the Government; it leaves the farmer in the same dead-end.

"The Government has just dressed up the existing crop insurance schemes, made minor changes, provided some additional resources on paper and added a lot of hype to create an impression as if the Indian farmers have been finally secured from recurrent crop losses. If anything, this scheme represents a missed opportunity to redress a long- standing and critical problem of the farm sector," it said.

Alleging that ever since the NDA government came to power, it has taken several "anti-farmers" steps like not importing urea, thereby creating artificial scarcity, scrapping of bonus on MSP, reneging on the written promise to raise MSP to 50 percent above production cost and attempting to bring the land acquisition act.

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