‘Insurers to settle claim amounts fast, need to trim lengthy documentation’

Bhubaneswar: With cyclone Fani giving a body blow to small scale industries, farmers and small traders alike in Odisha, the Union Finance Ministry has stepped in and directed the insurance companies to settle the claim amounts at the earliest without indulging in lengthy documentation process.

A direction to this effect has been recently delivered at a Joint Review Meeting (JRM) of Union Finance Ministry and State Finance department held in State Capital.

In order to provide immediate succour to Fani-hit industries in Odisha, the JRM has further decided to provide loans to hoteliers in the affected districts under the MUDRA yojana.

“Post evaluating the loss incurred by small traders, industries, farmers and hoteliers, the Union Finance Ministry has directed all insurance companies to settle the claims as  early as possible. All Fani-affected traders, farmers and small entrepreneurs can settle their insurance claims by submitting preliminary loss estimate documents,” informed Debashis Panda, Additional Secretary, Union Finance Ministry.

He further added that a loan restructuring package will be rolled out for the small business units, so as to make them avail fresh credit in simpler terms.

Meanwhile, State Finance Secretary Ashok Meena informed about Odisha government urging the Union Finance Ministry to let the State to opt for the Kerala Model of farm insurance so as to settle the insurance claims of affected farmers in a hassle free way. “All district collectors have been asked to send the crop loss estimation report as soon as possible,” added Meena.

As many as 1,800 public sector companies in Odisha have made insurance claims, suggest reports. Sources reveal that some claimants have also received interim claim amounts by the Insurance companies.

Now, insurance officials from West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh are in Odisha to verify and estimate the losses and claims made by affected parties, suggest reports.

“The cyclone has damaged costly equipments in our hospital. The total loss estimate has been pegged at around Rs 3 crore,” said Subhendu Das, VC, Blue Wheel Hospitals.

Similarly, as per MD Soukheen Matress, Saroj Patra, extensive damages to raw materials of the company were reported. “Since we have insured our business unit, we have submitted claims to our insurer,” informed Patra.