In the interim budget, Finance Minister Piyush Goyal announced direct income support of Rs 6,000 per year to 12 crore small and marginal farmers who hold cultivable land up to 3 hectares. As per the official document, the centre has now made Aadhar number of small and marginal farmers optional for availing the first installment of Rs 2,000 under the launch of Rs 75,000 crore PM-Kisan scheme.
In order to get the subsequent installments, the farmers do have to show the Aadhar number to verify their identity. This step has been taken to ensure that there is no duplication of the eligible farmers. The Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi i.e. PM-Kisan will be operational from this year and the first installment is expected to be transferred by March.
The Union Agriculture Ministry said in a letter to the state governments that if Aadhaar number is not available, then documents like driving license, voter’s ID card, NREGA job card, or any other identification issued by central or state governments can be used in order to avail the first installment.
The state governments would be preparing a database of the beneficiary families and will capture details such as name, gender, whether belonging to SC/ST, Aadhar, bank account number and their mobile number. The small and marginal landholder families comprising of husband, wife and minor children up to 18 years of age, who collectively own cultivable land up to two hectares as per the land records of the concerned states are eligible for this benefit.
The Centre has stated that it would be using the existing land-ownership system prevailing in the states and union territories in order to identify the land ownership. February 1, 2019 will be the cut-off date for the determination of ownership of land as per the land records under the scheme. The changes thereafter in land records will not be considered for the eligibility of the benefit to the new landholder for the coming five years.
Addition to this was that the scheme benefit will be allowed on ownership of cultivable land on account of succession. Just in case, a landholder farmer family (LFF) has land parcels spread across different villages, then the land will be pooled for determining the benefit. The land ownership rights are community-based in northeastern states. Thus, an alternate implementation mechanism needs to be developed and get approved by a committee.
A project monitoring unit at the central level will be up there, whereas the state would designate a branch department for implementation of the scheme. For redressing all grievances related to the implementation of the scheme, the state governments have been asked to notify district level grievances redressal committees.
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