Record 40 Million Farmers Enrolled Under PMFBY

Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY), the flagship crop insurance scheme of the Union Government, has registered a record enrollment of 40 million farmers in the Kharif season of 2021. This is an increase of 36% from the previous year, when 29.4 million farmers were enrolled under the scheme. The total area insured under PMFBY has also increased by 20% to 68.6 million hectares in 2021, compared to 57.2 million hectares in 2020.

Features of PMFBY

PMFBY is a risk mitigation tool that aims at providing financial support and stabilizing the income of farmers in case of crop loss or damage due to natural calamities, pests, and diseases. The scheme covers both pre-harvest and post-harvest losses, and offers a uniform premium rate of 2% for Kharif crops, 1.5% for Rabi crops, and 5% for annual commercial and horticultural crops. The difference between the actuarial premium rate and the farmer’s premium is borne by the Central and State Governments on a 50:50 basis.

The scheme was launched in 2016 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the objective of increasing the crop insurance coverage, reducing the premium burden on farmers, simplifying the claim settlement process, and promoting the use of technology for crop assessment and monitoring. The scheme has been revamped in 2020 to make it voluntary for all farmers, including loanee farmers who were previously mandated to enroll under the scheme. The scheme has also been made more farmer-friendly by allowing flexibility to States to choose crops, risk covers, and insurance companies.

Benefits of PMFBY

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, PMFBY has benefited more than 100 million farmers in the last five years, with a total claim amount of Rs. 1.02 lakh crore paid against a total premium of Rs. 60,000 crore collected. The scheme has also witnessed an improvement in the claim settlement ratio, which has increased from 83% in Kharif 2019 to 94% in Kharif 2020. The average claim settlement time has also reduced from 95 days in Kharif 2019 to 74 days in Kharif 2020.

The record enrollment of farmers under PMFBY reflects the growing trust and confidence of the farming community in the scheme. It also shows the commitment of the Central and State Governments to provide adequate and timely crop insurance to the farmers. PMFBY is one of the key initiatives of the Government to achieve the goal of doubling farmers’ income by 2022.

Examples of cover provided under PMFBY

Some of the recent examples of cover provided under PMFBY are:

  • In Rajasthan, more than Rs. 8,741 crore was paid to 69.70 lakh farmers during the lockdown period (24.03.2020 to 07.06.2020) for losses incurred due to drought, hailstorm, frost etc.
  • In Bihar, more than Rs. 1,800 crore was paid to 27 lakh farmers for losses incurred due to floods, drought etc.
  • In Karnataka, more than Rs. 1,600 crore was paid to 22 lakh farmers for losses incurred due to drought, floods etc.
  • In Maharashtra, more than Rs. 1,500 crore was paid to 20 lakh farmers for losses incurred due to drought, unseasonal rains etc.

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