NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday strongly batted for bringing 50 per cent of the farmers in the country under the recently launched crop insurance scheme, saying the programme had wide acceptability and assured support during post-harvest period also.
In his monthly radio broadcast ‘Mann Ki Baat’ programme, he said the unveiling of the ‘start-up India’ initiative this month had infused new energy among the youth and noted that the upcoming International Fleet Review programme Visakhapatnam from February 4 would be a significance event in the maritime history of the country.
In his 30-minute address, Modi dwelt at length on the Pradhan Mantri Crop Insurance Scheme, saying it had “wide acceptability because it has been made quite extensive and easy and involves use of technology. Not only this. If something happens to the crop within 15 days after harvest, even then help is assured.”
Modi said that for so many years, there had been talk of crop insurance but “not more than 20-25 per cent” of the country’s farmers had been been able to benefit from such schemes. “Can we take a pledge that we should connect at least 50 per cent of the farmers to this scheme in two years? I need this help from you. Because if a farmer joins the scheme, he will get huge help during a natural calamity,” he said.
Talking about the Start-up India campaign, the PM said it had broken the myth that start-ups were meant for IT-related businesses only and referred to two IIM graduates in Sikkim who were selling herbal and organic products.
Modi called for the promotion of Khadi to help in ameliorating unemployment and encouraged the observance of two minutes silence nationwide to mark the moment of Gandhiji’s assassination. He lauded the initiative of BJP-ruled Haryana and Gujarat to get educated girls to hoist the national flag on January 26.He congratulated Haryana for the increase in birth rate of the girl child.