Cabinet approves PM-AASHA to assure remunerative crop prices to farmers

Cabinet meeting, headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 12 announced a Rs 15,053-crore procurement policy named ‘Pradhan Mantri Annadata Aay Sanrakshan Abhiyan’ or PM-AASHA,  allowing the states to choose a compensation scheme and rope in private traders or agencies for procurement to ensure remunerative prices to farmers.

The PM-AASHA is an umbrella scheme which is comprised of three sub-schemes that includes Price Support Scheme (PSS), Price Deficiency Payment Scheme or Bhavantar Bhugtan Yojana, and piloted Private Procurement and Stockist Scheme.

Government statement reads that the Centre has made a provision of Rs 16,550 crore as a bank guarantee for its agencies to directly procure from farmers under PSS, while the budgetary allocation for PM-AASHA has been raised to Rs 15,053 crore.

Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh while addressing media said, “The PM-AASHA is aimed at ensuring remunerative prices to the farmers for their produce as announced in the Union Budget 2018. This is a historic decision.”

He further said that the Cabinet also decided to give an additional government guarantee of Rs 16,550 crore for procurement, taking the total to Rs 45,550 crore.