It's Official! Crop Damage Update: 189 Lakh Hectares

The unseasonal rainfall accompanied with hailstorm in February and March have caused much more damage to the crops than it was previously thought of, Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh told Rajya Sabha.

Radha Mohan Singh said that the latest assessment by state governments add up to 189 lakh hectares of cropped land that have been affected by the recent rainfall.

"I had told Lok Sabha on April 20 that a total of 94 lakh hectares of cropped land have been damaged. Since then some states have updated their numbers. As of now, the assessment is that 189 lakh hectares have been damaged," Singh said, adding that the Centre was doing all it could to give relief to the affected families.

The agriculture minister admitted that the crop insurance schemes, run by various private companies, had not turned out to be very effective.

"The Central government has given licences to these companies to run crop insurance schemes. But it is the states who select which companies would be allowed to operate in their area. We have already taken a number of steps to help farmers, including an increase in the compensation amount," he added.