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Chidambaram terms Centre's decision on crop insurance schemes as 'anti-farmer, retrograde'


New Delhi, Feb 20: Senior Congress leader and former Finance Minister P Chidambaram called the Centre's decision to reduce its contribution to the Crop Insurance Scheme as an "anti-farmer and a retrograde" step.

Taking to Twitter, Chidambaram said the Centre's decision is an example of "BJP government's shortsightedness and misplaced priorities."

File photo of Chidambaram

On Wednesday, the Centre made its crop insurance schemes voluntary for farmers with existing crop loans or those who are willing to take new ones.

In a tweet, Chidambaram said, "What is required is to bring more cropped area under crop insurance. The new decisions will reduce the coverage putting millions of farmers at risk."

"Nothing can be more anti-farmer than the central government's decision to reduce its contribution to the Crop Insurance Scheme," he added.

Whoever drafted grounds of detention for Abdullah, Mufti needs to be sacked: Chidambaram

Revamping the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) and Restructured Weather Based Crop Insurance Scheme (RWBCIS), the central government increased its premium subsidy to 90 per cent for the Northeast states from existing sharing pattern of 50:50.

Addressing the media on this decision, Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmer's Welfare Narendra Singh Tomar said, "Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana has been made voluntary. Till now, crop insurance was mandatory for loanee, whose number has been about 58 per cent. The percentage of non-loanee farmers was around 42, which was only 5 per cent before 2015."

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