Despite several farms getting inundated in heavy rainfall over the past few weeks, Gujarat government officials on Tuesday said that no farmer is currently entitled for compensation as per provisions of the Mukhyamantri Kisan Sahay Yojana, a new scheme floated by the state government this year, in place of the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY).
“The Mukhyamantri Kisan Sahay Yojana offers crop insurance to farmers of those areas where 25 inch of rain have fallen in 48 hours. The farmers need not apply. Up until now, no such event has taken place where any taluka has got more than 25 inch of rain, except those in
South Gujarat where the limit is 35 inch of rain in 48 hours,” said a senior official of the state agriculture and farmers’ welfare department.
The official said that as no region in Gujarat falls under the current provision of the Mukhyamantri Kisan Sahay Yojana, no farmer is currently entitled for crop insurance.
When asked if the farmers have to apply for crop loss under the new scheme, the official said the respective district collectors are monitoring the situation.
“We are monitoring the rainfall activity on a daily basis,” the official added.
The new crop insurance scheme was introduced for a year by the Gujarat government after the tenders for PMFBY were scrapped.
This monsoon season (till September 1), Gujarat has received almost 1,000 millimetre (mm) of rainfall, which is 68 percent more than the normal rainfall of 590 mm.
Monsoon has been very heavy in the Saurashtra-Kutch region. For instance, at 1,996 mm, Devbhoomi Dwarka district has received 345 percent more rainfall this season.
Similarly, the districts of Porbandar (154%), Jamnagar (168%) and Morbi (126%) have received very high rainfall during this monsoon season.
The district of Kutch, which usually receives around 320 mm rainfall every monsoon, saw 986 mm rainfall this year, which was 202% more.
“We are getting a lot of complaints from farmers. As per a rough estimate, about 60 percent of the crops sown during this Kharif season has been lost in the rainfall during the last 30 days. Farmers who have sown pulses, groundnut and sesame are staring at huge losses. What makes matters worse is that they do not have crop insurance and that they do not fall under the current guidelines of the Mukhyamantri Kisan Sahay Yojana,” said Sagar Rabari of Gujarat Khedut Ekta Manch, a farmers’ body.
“Farmers in the districts of Devbhoomi Dwarka, Jamnagar, Porbandar and Morbi are the most affected. Sesame, groundnut and pulses are among the most affected by the continuous rainfall which has affected the flowering,” Rabari said
“Farmers will not be covered under the new scheme as per present criteria. We have already asked for an amendment in the provisions for the scheme for farmers affected by continuous rainfall,” Rabari added.
According to data by the agriculture department, over 84.48 lakh hectare (lh) have been sown by farmers this Kharif season, which is more than 100 percent of the area sown last year (82.8 lh).
Most of this sowing has happened in Saurashtra and central Gujarat region.
Saurashtra alone accounts for 37.88 lh of sowing. This year, farmers have sown 145 percent more sesame, 134 percent more groundnut and 122 percent more soybean.