Why in News?
- The Union government has decided to cover damages to crops in wild animal attacks under the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojna in select districts on an experimental basis.
New Provisions to the PMFBY:
- Several parliamentarians have been raising this issue from time to time and demanding insurance cover for damages to the crops in animal attacks under the Centre’s scheme.
- The government has also brought under the PMFBY ambit certain horticultural crops on an experimental basis, the minister said.
- Damages to individual or limited number of cultivators in localised events like water logging, land slide, hailstorms etc did not fall under the ambit of PMFBY scheme earlier.
- However, they too are being covered now under new provisions.
- Now damages to the individual fields due to incidents of local disasters like cloud bursts and fire too are being taken up now for insurance claims.
Easing Insurance Claims settlements:
- The amended provisions for the scheme also stipulate fines in cases of delay in clearing the insurance claims for crop damages.
- In case a firm now delays the clearances beyond two months, it will have to pay an annual interest of 12 per cent.
- Similarly, the state government too will have to pay an interest of 12 per cent in case of delay in release of state’s share of subsidy in premium to insurance firms.
- The insurances firms will also have to spend 0.5 per cent of their earnings from annual premium to advertise the provisions of the PMFBY among the peasants.