Insurance schemes for farmers: a development measure to agriculture sector

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Agriculture remains as the dominant sector in the country both in terms of contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and as source of employment. Despite of the country’s focus on industrialization, agriculture still plays the vital role in the Indian economy. About 70 percent of the local households depend upon agriculture as a major source for their livelihood. Agriculture along with fisheries, livestock and forestry are the main contributors to the nation’s income.

Agriculture sector in India is vulnerable to many critical issues related such as lack of irrigation facilities, poor market demands, high input costs and poor transport infrastructure which adds up the cost of operations for farmers. It is also subjected to high risks due to the volatile nature of factors involved such as weather conditions which cannot be predicted and may sometimes lead to huge crop loss. As many local farmers take debts for agriculture these critical issues make them unable to repay it .These makes the farmers highly indebted and forces them to commit suicide.

To develop the agriculture sector the Central Government has planned to spend about Rs 50,000 crore extensively on the farming and irrigation sector. Also they are introducing insurance schemes for farmers to make them compensate with crop losses. These insurance scheme for farmers makes the crops insured and if any crops get damaged due to climatic disasters the farmer becomes automatically entitled to receive the insurance amount even by sitting at home.

The Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley addressing a public rally in Punjab admitted the fact that the condition of Indian farmers is becoming worse and is a “matter of concern” for the government. And to uplift the condition of farmers the government is bringing this insurance scheme applicable only for the farming sector and the minister asked the support of all the state governments to come forward with plans for the effective utilization of the funds to bring in positive changes in the field of agriculture.

Presently the government is unable to ensure even a 4 percent growth consistently in the field of agriculture but the introduction of the new insurance scheme may help to build a vibrant future for the farmers and raise their standard of living which in turn adds up its contribution to the economic development.

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