According to the agriculture census 2015-16, out of 12.56 crore small and marginal farmers (based on operational holdings), only 14.36% were female.
By Prabhudatta Mishra
In the first month since its August 9 rollout, the PM-Kisan pension scheme saw enrolment of over 14 lakh farmers, 28% of the registration being in poll-bound Haryana. The government is hopeful of covering more than 1 crore farmers in this fiscal itself as the scheme targets to attract 5 crore small and marginal farmers within the 18-40 age group in the next three years, a source said.
“Analysis of initial data (out of 7.5 lakh enrolments) suggests 35% of those who have joined are women. Since the upper age limit to join the scheme is 40 years, this indicates young female farmers are aware about the pension plan and this is indeed a positive sign (when it comes to meeting the targets),” the source added.
According to the agriculture census 2015-16, out of 12.56 crore small and marginal farmers (based on operational holdings), only 14.36% were female. The share of overall female operational land holders in all segments of farming community increased to 13.8% in 2015-16 from 12.8% in 2010-11. This shows that more and more females are participating in the management and operation of agricultural lands.
The government on August 9 rolled out the Rs 10,700-crore pension scheme for farmers —Pradhan Mantri Kisan Maan-Dhan Yojana (PM-KMY) — designed to ensure that beneficiaries get Rs 3,000 per month after attaining the age of 60. It was approved in the first Cabinet meeting of the second Narendra Modi government on May 31.
So far, only six states, including Jharkhand and Odisha, have recorded over 1 lakh farmers’ registration while 3.98 lakh joined in Haryana, followed by Bihar and Uttar Pradesh (1.70 lakh each) and Chhattisgarh (1.66 lakh).
The PM-KMY is a voluntary, contribution-based pension scheme and its enrolment is being done through the Common Service Centres (CSCs) located across the country, even in villages. Though there is no charge for farmers for registration under the scheme, the Centre is paying the CSC Rs 30 for each enrolment to ensure maximum coverage.
Under the scheme, managed by LIC, the total premium will be shared by farmer and the government on 50:50 basis. If a farmer enters the scheme at 18 years, he will have to pay a monthly premium of Rs 55 while the government will pay an equal amount. Similarly, the premium will be Rs 200 per month for a farmer if he enters the scheme at 40 years. In case of death of the farmer before 60 years, the spouse could continue with the scheme. But in case the spouse does not wish to contribute, the total contribution made by the farmer along with interest will be paid to her/him. If the farmer dies at 60, the spouse will receive Rs 1,500 per month till her/his death.