KALIA-KISAN double bonanza for Odisha farmers

Bhubaneswar: A few days ahead of the launch of the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) scheme by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Odisha government today stated that it would implement the Central scheme and include all the beneficiaries of the state government’s own KALIA scheme. Earlier apprehensions were being raised about implementation of the Central scheme as the State government is also implementing its own KALIA scheme, which is a similar cash benefit transfer programme.

Odisha Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi said all the beneficiaries of KALIA scheme will be covered under the PM-KISAN programme. In the first phase, a list of 12.45 lakh small and marginal farmers will be given to the Centre for the PM-KISAN programme.

“The small and marginal farmers, who have been included in the first phase of the KALIA scheme, will be covered under the PM-KISAN programme,” said Padhi.

“A decision has been taken by the State government to join the PM- KISAN programme. In the first phase, KALIA beneficiaries will be included and data of these small and marginal farmers will be uploaded,” said Saurabh Garg, Agriculture department secretary.

Other small and marginal farmers will be included in the State-sponsored KALIA scheme and later in the PM-KISAN scheme in phases, Garg further stated.

PM Modi will formally inaugurate the PM-KISAN scheme during a two-day farmers’ conclave at Gorakhpur on February 24. With its launch, the Central government will release Rs 2000 to each beneficiary through direct benefit transfer mode. The scheme promises Rs 6,000 per annum in three equal instalments to small and marginal farmers with land holding up to two hectares.

Meanwhile, the State government transferred Rs 700 crore to the bank accounts of over 14 lakh beneficiaries in the second phase of KALIA scheme at a programme in Bargarh.