Cabinet approves New Umbrella Scheme “Pradhan Mantri Annadata Aay SanraksHan Abhiyan” (PM-AASHA)

Giving a major boost to the pro-farmer initiatives of the Government and in keeping with its commitment and dedication for the Annadata, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved a new Umbrella Scheme “Pradhan Mantri Annadata Aay SanraksHan Abhiyan’ (PM-AASHA).  The Scheme is aimed at ensuring remunerative prices to the farmers for their produce as announced in the Union Budget for 2018.

The umbrella scheme ‘PM-AASHA’ comprises three sub-schemes:

  • Price Support Scheme (PSS).
  • Price Deficiency Payment Scheme (PDPS).
  • Pilot of Private Procurement & Stockist Scheme (PPPS).

Price Support Scheme (PSS):

  • Under the scheme, the physical procurement of pulses, oilseeds, and Copra will be done by Central Nodal Agencies with the proactive role of the state governments.
  • Further, in addition to NAFED, the Food Cooperation of India (FCI) will take up PSS operations in states and districts.
  • The procurement expenditure and losses due to procurement will be borne by the Union Government as per norms.

Price Deficiency Payment Scheme this scheme (PDPS):

  • Under the scheme, it is proposed to cover all oilseeds for which minimum support price (MSP) is notified.
  • In this, direct payment of the difference between the MSP and the selling/modal price will be made to pre-registered farmers selling his produce in the notified market yard through a transparent auction process. All payments will be done directly into the registered bank account of the farmer.
  • This scheme does not involve any physical procurement of crops as farmers are paid the difference between the MSP price and sale or modal price on disposal in the notified market. The support of the central government for PDPS will be given as per norms.

For oilseeds, the states will have the option to roll out Private Procurement Stockist Scheme (PPSS) on a pilot basis in selected districts and Agricultural Produce Market Committee’s (APMC) of district involving the participation of private stockiest.

The pilot district and selected APMC(s) will cover one or more crop of oilseeds for which MSP is notified.

Since this is similar to the PSS scheme, as it involves physical procurement of the notified commodity, the scheme shall substitute PSS/PDPS in the pilot districts.

The selected private agency shall procure the commodity at MSP in the notified markets during the notified period from the registered farmers in accordance with the PPSS Guidelines, whenever the prices in the market fall below the notified MSP and whenever authorized by the state or UT government to enter the market. The maximum service charges up to 15% of the notified MSP will be payable.

Increasing MSP is not adequate and it is more important that farmers should get the full benefit of the announced MSP. For the same, it is essential that if the price of the agriculture produce market is less than MSP, then in that case state governments and the central government should purchase either at MSP or work in a manner to provide MSP for the farmers through some other mechanism.

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