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India approves Modified Agriculture Insurance Scheme
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has approved the Modified National Agricultural Insurance Scheme. The scheme aims at enabling farmers to manage risk in agriculture production and stabilize farm income particularly during crop failure.

The Modified National Agricultural Insurance Scheme addresses the deficiencies in the 1999-2000 agricultural insurance scheme and aims at better enabling farmers to manage risk in agriculture production  and succeed in stabilizing farm income particularly at the times of crop failure.

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs today approved the Modified National Agricultural Insurance Scheme (MNAIS). The modified NAIS has been formulated, incorporating the necessary changes/modifications in consultation with States to remove the deficiencies and make it more comprehensive and farmer friendly.

The Scheme will be implemented as a Central Sector Scheme on a pilot basis in 50 districts in last two years of 11th Five Year Plan starting from the Rabi season of 2010-11. Approval has also been accorded for making budgetary provisions of ` 358 crore for the Modified NAIS for the years 2010-11 and 2011-12.

With the introduction of the modified scheme, it is expected that an increased number of farmers will be able to manage risk in agriculture production in a better way and will succeed in stabilizing farm income particularly at the times of crop failure on account of natural calamities.

Keeping in view the various risks involved in agriculture production, the Ministry of Agriculture has been implementing the National Agricultural Insurance Scheme (NAIS) as a Central Sector Scheme since Rabi season 1999-2000 to insure the farming community against these risks. It was reviewed based on the experience gained from its implementation, in which many deficiencies in the scheme were identified.

The approved scheme has the following features:

(i) Actuarial premiums will be paid for insuring the crops, hence the claims liability would be on the insurer;

(ii) The unit area of insurance for major crops is village panchayat;

(iii) Indemnity amount shall be payable for prevented sowing/planting risk and for post harvest losses due to cyclone;

(iv) On account payment up to 25% of likely claims would be released as advance for providing immediate relief to farmers;

(v) Uniform seasonality discipline for loanee and non-loanee farmers;

(vi) More proficient basis for calculation of threshold yield and minimum indemnity level of 70% instead of 60%;

(vii) Modified NAIS with improved features will have two components i.e. compulsory and voluntary. Loanee farmers will be insured under ‘compulsory category’ while non-loanee farmers will be insured under ‘voluntary category’;

(viii) Private sector insurers with adequate infrastructure and experience would also be allowed in the implementation of MNAIS.

Source: iGovernment