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Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN)

  • Context (IE l TH): Tamil Nadu Cauvery Farmers’ Protection Association has sought to investigate the alleged corruption worth crores in the name of farmers under the PM-KISAN.
  • GOI has added back 34 lakh farmers under the “saturation drive” after the beneficiaries under PM-KISAN dropped by 20%.
  • It has become operational from 1.12.2018.
  • Nodal Ministry: Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare
  • The scheme is meant for small and marginal land-holding farmers (SMFs), provided the farmland is cultivable.

Objectives of the Scheme

  • The scheme aims to supplement the financial needs of the farmers in procuring various inputs to ensure proper crop health and appropriate yields commensurate with the anticipated farm income.
  • To protect farmers from falling into the clutches of moneylenders for meeting such expenses.
  • To boost rural consumption in the country.
  • To supplement the efforts taken by the GOI to double farmers’ income by 2022.

Features Of PM KISAN

  1. Income Support
    • PM-KISAN Yojana provides minimum income support to farmers.
    • Eligible farmer families receive Rs.6000 annually, distributed in three equal instalments every four months.
    • The scheme was initially meant for SMFs having landholding up to 2 hectares, but the scope was extended to cover all landholding farmers regardless of the land size.
  • Small and Marginal Farmer (SMF) – a farmer who owns cultivable land up to 2 hectares per land records of the concerned State/UT.
Usage Flexibility
  • There are no specific restrictions on how beneficiaries can utilise the amount received under the scheme.
  • They are free to use it for various purposes as per their needs.
  1. Funding
    • PM KISAN is a central sector scheme with all the funding coming from GOI.
    • Initially, a reserve of Rs.75000 crore per year was allocated for this initiative, with direct transfers to beneficiaries‘ bank accounts via DBT.
  2. Identification Responsibility
    • The identification of beneficiaries is the responsibility of the State and Union Territory governments.
    • These governments determine which farmer families qualify for the scheme.
  • Definition of family under the scheme: A family consists of a husband, wife, and minor child or children.

Who Is Not Eligible to Avail PM KISAN Yojana?

  • All farmers are eligible for monetary assistance under the scheme. The following categories of beneficiaries do not qualify for the PM KISAN yojana:
    1. Institutional landholders
    2. Present and former holders of constitutional posts
    3. Former and present ministers/state ministers
    4. Present and former members of Rajya Sabha/State Legislative Assemblies/Lok Sabha/State Legislative Councils
    5. Former and present Mayors of Municipal Corporations
    6. Present and former Chairpersons of District Panchayats
    7. All retired or serving State/Central Government officers, State or Central PSEs, and regular Local Bodies employees.
    8. Every retired/superannuated pensioner having a monthly pension of ₹10,000 or higher (excluding Multi-Tasking Staff/Group D/Class IV employees of the above category)
    9. Every individual who has paid income tax in the last assessment year.
    10. Professionals like engineers, architects, lawyers, doctors, and chartered accountants registered with professional bodies carry out their profession by undertaking practices.

Performance of PM KISAN Yojana

Significance of the scheme

  • The direct transfer of funds is one of the most significant advantages of this scheme.
  • Digitisation of all the records related to farmers makes the registration and fund transfer easy.
  • There is no discrimination in choosing the PM-KISAN beneficiaries
  • PM-KISAN yojana is a big step towards the GOI’s initiatives to modernise agriculture.
  • As per the study by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), PM-KISAN had numerous benefits for farmers and agriculture
    1. It addresses the liquidity constraints of farming households.
    2. The scheme boosts modern cultivar adoption through Krishi Vigyan Kendras.
    3. The cash transfer to farmers increases their net income and enhances their risk-taking capacity.
    4. This has led to productive investments (purchasing seeds, fertilisers, and necessary equipment), increased agricultural production and improved crop yields.
    5. PM-KISAN has eased credit constraints and spurred rural economic growth.

Criticism of the Scheme

  • PM-KISAN is not reaching all farmer households as intended.
    • Only 21 percent of the cultivators interviewed reported receiving the benefit.
    • The in exclusion is greater UP than in Haryana and Rajasthan.
  • This scheme is not pro-poor since recipients of PM-KISAN seemed to be better off than the general rural population.
  • While PM-KISAN aims to cover small and marginal farmers (85% of the farmer population), landless agricultural labourers and tenant farmers are left in the lurch.
  • Due to the volatile market and price fluctuations in different regions, indexing the cash transfers to local inflation is essential.
    • Failure of DBT in kerosene in Rajasthan, where the cash transferred to families has been insufficient to purchase kerosene, as the market price increased substantially.
  • The scheme does not provide a straightforward design of transfers and a framework for effective grievance redress.

Challenges

  • If beneficiary farmers wish to lease their lands to tenant farmers or keep their lands fallow for some time, are they eligible to receive cash benefits?
  • Except for a few states, others are still lagging in maintaining a database for land records.
  • In the northeastern states, land ownership rights are community-based, making it difficult to identify beneficiaries.
  • There are concerns at the operational level regarding land record reconciliation, digitisation of land records, and costs incurred in consolidating land records.
  • The drive of implementing PM-KISAN can increase opportunity costs of critical (human) resources, shoot up operating expenses and strain the fiscal health of concerned states.

PM-KISAN Mobile App:

  • The PM-KISAN Mobile App was developed and designed by the National Informatics Centre in collaboration with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology and has been launched.
  • The farmers can view the status of their application, update or carry out corrections to their Aadhaar cards and check the credit history of their bank accounts.

Similar programmes by state governments:

Bhavantar Bhugtan Yojana:

  • Madhya Pradesh sought to relieve farmers by providing the differential between MSPs and market prices.

The Rythu Bandhu scheme

  • The Telangana government provides ₹4,000 per acre for every season to all the state’s farmers.
  • Similar initiatives have also been framed in Jharkhand and Odisha.

KALIA SCHEME

  • Odisha launched the Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income augmentation (KALIA).
  • KALIA is more complicated in design and implementation.
  • It commits to give Rs 5,000 per SMF twice a year, that is Rs 10,000 a year.
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