Crop insurance claims settlement tops Rs15,500 crore in 10 years; benefits over 42 million farmers

Crop insurance claims worth Rs15,521 crore have been settled as of 24 June 2010, benefiting 42.7 million farmers across the country between Rabi 1999-2000 and Kharif 2009, under the National Agriculture Insurance Scheme (NAIS).

Gujarat emerged at the top of the list with Rs3,041 crore worth of claims settled, followed by Andhra Pradesh (Rs2,600 crore), Maharashtra (Rs1,481 crore), Karnataka (Rs1,406 crore) and Bihar (Rs1,236 crore), an official release said.

In terms of number of farmers benefiting from the settlement of claims, Maharashtra leads the tally with over 85 lakh beneficiary farmers followed by Rajasthan (51 lakh), Karnataka (43 lakh), Andhra Pradesh (39 lakh), Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh over 36 lakh each.

For the current fiscal a sum of Rs950 crore has been allocated for the scheme.

The scheme, launched in 1999-2000 (Rabi season), aims at providing insurance coverage and financial support to the farmers in the event of failure of any of the notified crops due to natural calamities, pests and diseases. Any farmer, including share-cropper, tenant farmer, growing notified crops in the notified area, irrespective of the size of landholding, can avail of the benefit.

All food crops / oilseeds and annual commercial/horticultural crops, in respect of which past yield data is available for adequate number of years, are covered under it. Sum insured may extend to the value of threshold yield of the area insured.

Flat premium rates range between 1.5 per cent to 3.5 per cent for food and oilseed crops and actuarial rates for annual commercial / horticultural crops. Small and marginal farmers are given a 10-per cent subsidy in premium. The scheme is compulsory for loanee farmers and optional for non-loanee farmers.

The scheme is implemented by the Agriculture Insurance Company of India Ltd.