PENSION For Small, Marginal Farmers & Traders Announced by Union Cabinet Await Parliament’s Nod

The first meet of the Union Cabinet chaired by  PM Narendra Modi has approved  pension scheme for small and marginal traders and also extension of the  PM-KISAN scheme to benefit  14.5 crore farmers  across the nation and announced over Rs 10,000 crore pension scheme for 5 crore farmers. The schemes will be part of the Union Budget 2019-2020 to be approved by Parliament meeting from June 17 and July 5.The schemes were part of pre –election commitments made by the BJP. The Rs 75,000-crore Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Siddhi (PMKSS) was announced in the interim Budget ahead of the just concluded Parliamentary polls. Then Government decided to provide Rs 6,000 annually in three equal instalments to an estimated 12.5 crore small and marginal farmers holding land up to 2 hectares. The revised scheme envisages to cover around 2 crore more farmers increasing the coverage of the PM-KISAN to an estimated 14.5 crore beneficiaries .The first instalment has been given to only 3.11 crore beneficiaries and second to 2.66 crore beneficiaries as many states did not provide the data of eligible farmers. Giving the rural distress impacting mostly small and marginal farmers, it is a welcome step. But it will not be panacea for resolving multiple problems facing the Indian farming community. The monetary benefits should be gradually increased like the government’s policy to double their incomes in phases with increasing MSP (Minimum Support Price) for agricultural produce .What is also urgently called for elimination of agents pocketing a large portion of their entitlements. Another major decision taken at the first Cabinet meet is the approval The Pradhan Mantri Kisan Pension Yojana under which small and marginal farmers will get a minimum fixed pension of Rs 3,000 per month on attaining the age of 60 years. It will be appreciable if the entry age of 18-40 years is revised for the Kisans and the matching contribution of the federal government should be revised upwards from the proposed 50 percent since agricultural operation including yields depend on varies factors and these are indeed unpredictable. After the subscribers’ demise, their spouses will be entitled to receive 50 per cent of the pension amount, provided he/she is not already a beneficiary of the scheme. Farmers can use benefits under PM-KISAN scheme for the making contribution under the pension scheme. The pension scheme will undoubtedly ensure social security to poor and small farmers. The decisive mandate received by   Prime Minister Modi puts onus on him to make sincere and relentless efforts to build a new inclusive India where there will be progress for all and the country transforms itself as an engine of global growth. As President Ram Nath Kovind says rightly the verdict in favour of the NDA government for next five years, is an affirmation of Modi’s visionary leadership to build a New India, not in distant future. No one irrespective religion, and caste and sex must should be left behind. The goal should be for eliminating extreme poverty in the coming decade. A new India should be created for all citizens and coming generations by realising the potential in every girl-child using new-age technology and the limitless energy of its youth. India we envisage should be fast transforming itself as an engine of global growth and a centre of global power-relations besides a pluralistic nation for all. Good governance, equal opportunities, efficient, equitable and efficient delivery of public goods and services should be among the government’s priorities. There should not be any compromise on the vital issues. India like other nations definitely cannot live in isolation. For reaching the desired goalpost, India   needs to earn respect and trust of all the countries through transparent bilateral and multilateral cooperation in trade, commerce and in cultural affairs.(courtesy : musingsofaseniorjournalist.wordpress.com)

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