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Bihar to implement new crop insurance scheme

 Keeping in mind the sentiments of farmers, the Bihar government has finally agreed to implement the new crop insurance scheme on an experimental basis in the ongoing kharif season. 

The decision in this regard was taken by the state government days after indulging in letter war with the Centre over different issues, including re-naming the insurance scheme.

“The crop insurance scheme will be implemented in its present form for the kharif season on an experimental basis,” Bihar’s Cooperative Minister Alok Kumar Mehta told reporters in Patna. 

Commenting on Bihar government’s decision, Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh said, 

“Whom should I thank? The Bihar government or the God for giving wisdom to the state government? For the last few days, the state government was targeting the Centre by quoting wrong information.”
Mehta, however, made it clear that the scheme is being implemented on a trial basis with a view to assess whether it actually helps farmers or ends up benefitting the insurance companies. It would also be seen what amount of compensation the farmers get in the event of crop loss, he said.

The last date for implementation of the scheme is August 15, he said, adding that the state government would extend the deadline if needed. Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar had recently said that the scheme should have been named ‘PM-CM farmer insurance scheme’ or ‘Kendra-Rajya Fasal Bima Yojana’ instead of being named exclusively after the Prime Minister as both the Centre and states have to bear the financial burden of its implementation.

Mehta held a meeting with Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh in Delhi on August 8 but the issue remained unresolved. Subsequently, Singh wrote to Mehta saying that not implementing the scheme will ultimately harm the farmers of Bihar.
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