BHUBANESWAR: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Monday requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to include landless labourers, share croppers and vulnerable agricultural households in the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PMKISAN) scheme. Drawing parallels with the Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA) scheme launched by the Odisha government, the Chief Minister said it will make PM-KISAN more inclusive and further accelerate agricultural prosperity of farmers and reduce poverty.
In a letter to the Prime Minister, Naveen welcomed the announcement of PM-KISAN for providing income support to farmers with 100 per cent funding by the Centre.
The scheme conceptualised on the lines of KALIA, is set to provide `6000 in three instalments to poor and marginalised famers. Drawing notice to the State’s own scheme, he said, “Odisha, in December 2018 approved the KALIA scheme. It covers 92% of the cultivators, share croppers (actual cultivators) and landless agriculture labourers in the state.”
Under the first component of the scheme, an assistance of `25,000 is being provided to each of the family of small and marginal farmer over five agricultural seasons. The gover nment has made a provision of `4461 crore in the vote on account passed in the Assembly for implementation of the scheme in the first four months of 2019-20 financial year.
The Chief Minister said the scheme launched by Odisha recognises that livestock and fishery based activities are key drivers of economic growth in rural areas particularly for landless households as the income from wage labour alone is insufficient. The scheme also provides for financial assistance to vulnerable agricultural households who may not be able to take up cultivation or the livelihood activities due to various reasons.
“The scheme has already been rolled out in January, 2019 and created a huge interest and response among the farming community of the state. It shall be our endeavour to ensure that all eligible beneficiaries are assisted under the scheme, so that no one who is eligible is left out,” Naveen said. The Chief Minister’s letter assumes significance as the Centre has sought cooperation of the state government for effective implementation of PMKISAN scheme. With the elections looming, there is an urgency to get the programme rolling. The financial support to the farmers will be paid in three instalments with the first instalment targeted to be transferred to the farmers’ accounts by March.