Farmers cry foul on centre's insurance scheme, brand it bogus
- Unmesh Gujarathi
- Oct 27, 2021
MUMBAI: In the face of mounting farmer suicides in the various states amidst failures on part of the insurance companies under the aegis of the centre to clear the pending claims from the farming community being on the rise, there prevails widespread disillusionment with the union government's Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana(PMFBY). Repeated cries for help from small and marginal farmers who feel cheated on this count has lent their voice in the form of a political outrage being expressed over the Centre's scheme of things benefitting private insurance firms at the cost of the farming community's financial stakes.
Former Karnataka MLA, B R Patil, aired his views about the farmers' dilemma in a press statement, emphasizing that majority of the insurance benefit claims made by the farming community get rejected by the private insurance firms, with an eye on enhancing their bottom lines.
The opposition cries in Maharashtra also found an echo from Telangana Chief Minister Chandrashekar Rao who bemoaned that farmers in the state are faced with an acute crisis owing to natural calamities that have caused severe crop damage. "The Centre's PMFBY has been of no avail to our state's farming community. It's a bogus scheme that is designed to cheat the farmers and act in favour of private insurance firms that are eyeing huge profits," he emphasized.
With farmers across states facing financial crisis owing to their insurance claims by and large being rejected by the insurance firms, Patil cited statistics to support his claim, stating, "While the farming community in the state of Karnataka were made to part with a sum of INR 2,276.33 crores by lieu of insurance premiums, the settlement claims of the community in sharp contrast stands at INR 1,167.76 crores." SanjeevKumar Sadanandan of Janata Dal (secular) Mumbai, opined that the private insurance players entering into the agricultural fray were by itself a bad idea.
"For insurance always works on the principle that premiums from a large number of people are used to compensate for the losses of an affected few. However, when it comes to farming, it's not just a few farmers that get affected by climatic disasters. It's the entire community that gets affected. If one thinks logically, compensating the entire farming community with just their premiums as income is a financially infeasible task," Sadanandan said.
Farmer leader With an increasing number of farmer deaths pan India including the states of Jharkhand, Gujarat, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana and Maharashtra the aggrieved farmer community has expressed mounting angst on the inability of the mainstream opposition parties to take up their cause strongly enough in the corridors of parliament.
Many from the farming community felt compelled to grouse that no one in the country cares about farmers. "Farmers exist only to be exploited for their electoral gains, their real causes are completely being ignored by the Modi government," Sadanandan added.