NEW DELHI: In the wake of deficit monsoon rains, farmers in Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan have received insurance claims totalling Rs 686 crore directly in their bank accounts, against damage to kharif crops in this fiscal so far.
Farmers in these two states had insured crops sown in the kharif 2015 season under two schemes -- Modified National Agriculture Scheme (MNAIS) and Weather Based Crop Insurance Scheme (WBCIS). The crops were hit by drought.
"All admissible claims under MNAIS and WBCIS for kharif 2015 have been released to the bank and the same have been credited into the bank accounts of farmers," a senior Agriculture Ministry official said.
In Rajasthan, the entire insurance claim of Rs 525 crore under the WBCIS has been disbursed to farmers, while the insurance claims under MNAIS is also being settled, he said.
In Uttar Pradesh, a total of Rs 339 crore insurance claims were filed under the two schemes, of which claims worth Rs 169 crore have been settled.
During the kharif (summer) season of 2015-16 crop year (July-June), 63.68 lakh farmers had insured about their 68.95 lakh hectare of farm land in Rajasthan, while 15.32 lakh farmers had insured 16.16 lakh hectare in Uttar Pradesh, as per the government data.
The crops were affected largely due to drought in these two states following deficit monsoon rains.
It may be noted that at present, three crop insurance schemes -- MNAIS, NAIS and WBCIS -- are available for farmers.
Not all three schemes are implemented in all states. Some are implementing MNAIS and WBCIS, while others only NAIS.
The insurance claim settlement is faster under MNAIS and WBCIS, while there is huge delay in NAIS.
As many as 11 government empaneled insurance companies like ICICI Lombard, HDFC ERGO and SBI General Insurance are selling these insurance schemes in these two states.
Merging the existing schemes, the government has launched the new crop insurance scheme called Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana to be rolled out during the kharif 2016 season.
The new scheme has fixed less premium on farmers and aims to settle claims faster using modern technologies.