Many schemes for the farmers, but just a few benefit them and very few are being implemented.
Bengaluru: Farmers in rural Bengaluru did not receive any insurance or subsidies for the losses they faced following the recent floods. Some schemes launched by the state government in the recent budget are not implemented yet.
Venkateshappa, a farmer in K. Golahalli said, “The increase in diesel prices and the floods at the same time had led us to a tough time. I give my tractor on rent to the farmers around. All the diesel and operational charges are borne by me.” Venkateshappa rents his tractor for Rs. 1200 for one day and hoped to work with diesel subsidies that would have come through the Raitha Shakti scheme . Venkateshappa also said that he will be facing losses if the area floods again. “Right now, I am neither in profit nor in loss,” he added.
The Chief Minister has proposed the Karnataka Raitha Shakti in the current state budget 2022-2023. The main idea of the scheme is to offer discounted diesel to the farmers. Venkateshappa’s harvest was lower than what he expected because his crop was damaged in the rains. He said, “I do not believe in crop insurance or any schemes. However, the government will not provide us with any subsidies.” He is not aware of the Raitha Shakti scheme.
“The scheme will help farmers with climate-related issues, if there is a decrease in yield then these subsidies will help the farmers to cut their cost of production. We provide diesel subsidies to all farmers enrolled in the Farmer Registration and Unified Beneficiary System (FRUITS) portal,” said an official from the department of agriculture.
The official said that the scheme will be launched in December 2022. “Rs. 500 crores allocated in the state budget 2022-23 for this scheme will be given to farmers in the state in December as soon as the scheme is launched,” said the official.
Beneficiaries of the Raitha Shakti scheme are those farmers who are enrolled in the FRUITS portal. AThe farmers whose land is not registered in this scheme can register to receive the scheme benefits.
Vani, an economics lecturer at Little Flower Junior College in Hyderabad said, “Such schemes will benefit large-scale farmers, as not all farmers use tractors. The government must bring out schemes and subsidies for raw materials which are used by every farmer.” According to the expert, not many will benefit from such schemes.
“Also, not all the farmers own land, most of them are working-labor on other farmers’ land. So here the landlord will benefit from the scheme and not the farmers who work in the fields. The government should concentrate on schemes benefitting such sections of society,” she said.
Vani says that the scheme should benefit small farmers and marginal farmers. “Do not know if this scheme would benefit the agricultural sector wholly,” the lecturer said.