BHUBANESWAR: Going back of its earlier decision to merge flagship Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA) scheme with the Centre’s Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-Kisan) Yojana, the state government on Wednesday said there is no such move.
In a written reply to a question in the Assembly, Agriculture and Farmers’ Empowerment Minister Arun Sahoo said eligible farmers will get Rs 10,000 per annum as financial assistance as announced by the Government earlier.
He said the farmers, who will get Rs 6,000 under PM-Kisan in three instalments, will be provided another Rs 4,000 under KALIA.
The KALIA scheme was launched by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik in December, 2018.
On December 5, 2019, Sahoo had indicated about the merger of the State scheme with PM-Kisan apparently due to financial constraint.
A senior officer of the department had said talks were on with the Central Government to finalise the modalities.
The decision to merge the two schemes had drawn sharp criticism from the opposition BJP and Congress. The Government is constantly under fire from the BJP for not providing a detail list of eligible farmers to the Centre for the PM-Kisan assistance.
Besides, the Government has become an object of ridicule because of its inconsistency in the figure of KALIA beneficiaries.
While the Agriculture Minister has been claiming that 51,50,290 farmers have benefited from the State scheme, Finance Minister Niranjan Pujari told the Assembly on Tuesday while presenting the State Budget that 43 lakh beneficiaries have received the assistance.A sum of `3,195 crore has been allocated under the KALIA scheme for 2020-21 fiscal.