VIJAYAWADA: Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Friday released Rs 596.36 crore insurance benefit to 5.94 lakh farmers in the State for the year 2018-19, which farmers could not get due to previous TDP government’s failure to pay the premium to insurance companies. Interacting with farmers through a video conference from his camp office, the Chief Minister said so many farmers being denied the insurance amount for the damaged crops in 2018-19 shows how the state of affairs were during the previous TDP regime.
“Crop insurance premium is paid by three people — farmers, State government and Centre. In 2018-19, farmers paid their part and the Centre paid its share, but the State government failed to clear its share of Rs 126 crore. Only when the insurance premium is paid in time, the farmers stand to get the insurance amount in case of crop loss,” he said. Witnessing the plight of farmers, the YSRC government negotiated with the insurance companies, explaining to them the losses sustained by the farmers and made them agree to pay the insurance amount, while clearing the old dues of Rs 126 crore, he said.
Now, 5.94 lakh farmers are being paid Rs 596 crore insurance amount. “To ensure that such a situation does not arise again and see that farmers are not subjected to any inconvenience, we have brought changes in the crop insurance. Hereafter, farmers’ share of the crop insurance premium will be paid by the State government on their behalf. All they have to do is pay Rs 1 as premium after completing e-Cropping with the help of agriculture assistant, surveyor and village assistant stationed at the respective village secretariats and Rythu Bharosa Kendras. The three people will conduct a joint survey and complete e-Cropping and insurance registration formalities,” he explained.
Reiterating that farmers’ welfare is the top most priority of his government, Jagan said the YSR Rythu Bharosa scheme facilitates e-Crop insurance, crop loans, quality seeds, fertilisers and pesticides and provision of advice to cultivate suitable crop to achieve optimum yield, besides ensuring minimum support price for the farm produce. The Chief Minister directed the officials concerned to credit the amount to the unencumbered bank accounts of the farmers and asked the district collectors to ensure that bankers do not adjust the amount to old dues.
Thanking the Chief Minister on behalf of the farmers, Minister for Agriculture Kurasala Kannababu said apart from clearing the old dues and helping the farmers get the insurance, new reforms were introduced. A separate insurance corporation will be set up in the State shortly. With regular rains, sowing and transplantation activities during Kharif have gained pace and RBKs are being well received by farmers, he said.
Later, Jagan interacted with the farmers from Nellore, Chittoor, Kurnool, Anantapur and Prakasam districts and all of them thanked him for releasing the insurance amount as they lost hopes of getting the benefit. “It is the first time, such a thing has happened and we are grateful to you,” said B Yogendra Reddy, a farmer from Anantapur.