Separate set-up for crop insurance scheme in Karnataka
After suffering huge crop losses because of monsoon vagaries for three consecutive years, Karnataka is now considering having its own institutional arrangement for effectively implementing the Centre’s crop insurance scheme. The coverage is just 17% in Karnataka and 56.7% of farmers here are not happy with the Central scheme.
Karnataka Agricultural Prices Commission (KAPC) chairman T.N. Prakash Kammaradi says that two studies commissioned through the Institute for Social and Economic Change in the southern districts and Dharwad-based Centre for Multi-Disciplinary Development Research in the northern districts have indicated the need for a State-level institutional mechanism for monitoring the scheme.
The poor coverage of the scheme is a cause for concern. Though the coverage is marginally higher than that in the previous year, Dr. Prakash notes that it is a clear indication that crop insurance scheme has not benefited many.
“The other insurance schemes such as life insurance or health insurance are aggressively marketed by agents. But there are no agents or facilitators for the crop insurance scheme as the State Agriculture Department and banks, which deal with crop insurance scheme, are already burdened with other work,” he says.
Also, there is a need to modify the Central scheme to suit the specific requirements of State farmers and farming practices.
The study in Kolar, Mandya, Tumakuru, and Chitradurga by professor Meenakshi Rajeev shows that 56.7% of farmers have said they are not satisfied with the scheme, though this is said to be more beneficial than the previous one.