New Delhi: Ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, the Narendra Modi Government on Friday made a big ticket budget announcement to woo the farming class with a direct benefit transfer scheme for them and address the agrarian crisis.
To provide support to small and marginal farmers and improve their income, interim Finance Minister Piyush Goyal announced the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana (PMKSNY) . Farmers with less than 2 hectare land will be given Rs 6,000 per year as direct transfer. The amount will be transferred in three installments and this programme will be funded 100 percent by the Central government. Goyal said 12 crore farmer families will benefit from this. The scheme will cost the government Rs 75,000 crore.
The scheme will come into effect from December 1, 2019 and the first installment of Rs 2000 crore will be transferred to the bank accounts shortly, Goyal said in his Budget speech.
The announcement followed BJP’s defeat in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhatisgarh last year, which was largely attributed to the farming class distancing itself from the party ruled governments in these states because of the farm distress.
The scheme largely borders on the Odisha government’s Kalia programme to provide direct cash support to the marginal farmers and share croppers. Kalia was launched in January this year and its benefit is extended to landless farmers as well. PMKSNY, however, does not benefit such farmers.
Odisha Bytes was the first to report about the Centre examining the Kalia scheme for a nation-wide roll out.
Goyal also announced that farmers severely affected by natural calamities will get 2 percent interest subvention and additional 3 percent interest subvention upon timely repayment.