Farmers incomes set to get big PM-Aasha scheme boost; here's how
Government expects to protect the income of farmers through this scheme, which is expected to go a long way towards promoting the welfare of farmers.
After introducing new guidelines under Jan Dhan Account, the NDA government has now decided to solve troubles of Indian farmers by approving a new umbrella scheme ‘Pradhan Mantri Annadata Aay SanraksHan Abhiyan’, which in short is pronounced as PM-Aasha. The scheme is aimed at ensuring farmers get remunerative prices for their produce as announced in the Union Budget for 2018. Government expects to protect the income of farmers through this scheme, which is expected to go a long way towards promoting the welfare of farmers.
Following the new scheme, a SBI Research note said, “The new procurement policy under the Umbrella Scheme “Pradhan Mantri Annadata Aay SanraksHan Abhiyan’ (PM-AASHA) is most welcome.”
Here’s how this new scheme helps farmers:
The new umbrella scheme includes the mechanism of ensuring remunerative prices to the farmers and is comprised of - Price Support Scheme (PSS), Price Deficiency Payment Scheme (PDPS) and Pilot of Private Procurement & Stockist Scheme (PPPS).
In PSS, physical procurement of pulses, oil seeds and Copra will be done by Central Nodal Agencies with proactive role of State governments. It is also decided that in addition to NAFED, Food Cooperation of India (FCI) will take up PSS operations in states /districts.
While under PDPS, it is proposed to cover all oil seeds for which MSP is notified. In this direct payment of the difference between the MSP and the selling/modal price will be made to pre-registered farmers selling his produce in the notified market yard through a transparent auction process. All payment will be done directly into registered bank account of the farmer.
The PDPS scheme does not involve any physical procurement of crops as farmers are paid the difference between the MSP price and Sale/modal price on disposal in notified market.
As for PPSS, the selected private agency shall procure the commodity at MSP in the notified markets during the notified period from the registered farmers in consonance with the PPSS Guidelines. Whenever the prices in the market fall below the notified MSP and whenever authorized by the state/UT government to enter the market and maximum service charges up to 15% of the notified MSP will be payable.
For this, the budget provision for procurement operations has also been increased and Rs. 15,053 crore is sanctioned for PM-AASHA implementation. Cabinet also decided to give additional government guarantee of Rs.16,550 crore making it Rs. 45,550 crore in total.
According to SBI, the PDPS will address the price distress in oilseeds through Price Compensation Scheme in line with “Bhavantar Bhugtan Yojana” which is already implemented in Madhya Pradesh.
Additionally, SBI explains cabinet has also approved by allowing States to rope private players in the procurement programme. Apart from this, as agriculture comes under “State list” in Indian constitution, so the state government will be given an option to choose multiple schemes to protect the farmers.
In its press release, the cabinet said, “The Government is committed to realizing the vision of doubling farmers’ income by 2022. The emphasis is on enhancing productivity, reducing cost of cultivation and strengthening post-harvesting management, including market structure. Several market reforms have been initiated.”