The Union Cabinet has approved the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Amman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) scheme, seeking to provide income support to all small and marginal landholder farmers' families with cultivable land holding up to two hectares across the country.
The cabinet briefing was chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The amount is being released in three 4-monthly instalments of Rs. 2000 each over the year, to be credited into the bank accounts of the beneficiaries held in destination banks through Direct Benefits Transfer mode.
A total amount of more than Rs. 2000 crores has already been released to more than one crore farmers' families across the country in the first lot of 1st instalment. Further releases for the 1st instalment to the remaining beneficiaries are being made.
The second instalment under the scheme would be admissible after April 1, 2019. In this connection, it is stated that the Union Cabinet, while approving the scheme on February 1, made Aadhaar seeding of the beneficiaries' data compulsory for the release of second instalment onwards.
However, it would be difficult to get 100 per cent Aadhaar seeding for the release of funds for the second instalment, as efficient seeding of beneficiaries' details with Aadhaar requires biometric authentication.
Demographic seeding will result in large scale rejection as the spellings of names have to be exactly the same. Non-seeding of beneficiaries' details with Aadhaar number will delay the release of the second instalment as it is due on April 1, 2019, and will cause discontent among the farmers. Therefore, this condition has been relaxed.
The condition will remain applicable for release of 3rd instalment onwards. However, Aadhaar number shall be compulsory for the release of the second instalment. The Government will take adequate measures to validate the data before payment is made.