New Delhi: Recognition as a farmer by the Government through its PM KISAN scheme has played an important role in not only is ensuring income but also is giving confidence to every farmer across the country. Addressing the “3rd India Agricultural outlook forum 2019” with theme ‘Universal Basic Income for Farmers’ today, Secretary Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Sanjay Agarwal said that 85 million farmers have already registered for the scheme and an amount to the tune of US $ 3.5 billion has been transferred to about 65 million farmers in the first installment itself. The income support scheme had really supported the farmers as about 1.1 million farmers in the initial installment had less than Rs. 500 in their account and the amount of Rs. 2000 credited through PM KISAN was withdrawn on the day itself. Elaborating the Scheme to the gathering which consisted of representatives from World Organizations and foreign delegates the Secretary said that beneficiaries are being identified by the State Governments and it is 100% Central Sector scheme, providing an income support of Rs.6000/- per year provided to small and marginal farmer families.
Highlighting several topics for the two day session, Agarwal said that Artificial Intelligence and Big Data can play a great role in Agriculture Sector as the data is key to targeted development. Government is collating the data of its farmers through registration process for major Schemes, details of land holdings are getting digitized, insurance data, Soil Health Card data, KCC information data etc. which is further being utilized for understanding the actual status of farmer and his cultivation.
In the Crop Insurance sector, the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana now envisages use of improved technology like remote sensing imageries, Artificial Intelligence, Modeling tools to reduce time gap for settlement of claims. The PMFBY insurance cover is to the tune of about US $3.5 billion annually and covers nearly 20 million farmers.
Delivering his address, Dr. Ramesh Chand, Niti Ayog Member said that situation in the country is now favorable for positive changes as the recommendations given by the scientists/researchers are being considered and implemented by the Government, therefore this opportunity should be properly utilized. Indian Agricultural sector has reached a stage of high commercialization and so it is imminent that there is a need to have an Outlook mechanism wherein the likely events in future could be forecasted and right kind of strategy can be adopted.