Reliance General Insurance, in the third week of August 2013 entered into the agriculture area by launching the weather- and yield-based crop insurance schemes in five different states of India. These schemes will focus on the farmers in the five states- Uttarakhand, Haryana, Assam, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh.
Reliance General Insurance planned to include around one lakh farmers in 10 India states by 2013-14 fiscal year end. The company has been empanelled by the Union Government of India in order to implement the Weather-Based Crop Insurance (WBCI) scheme in 21 states of India. The company also received the authorisation from the National Agricultural Insurance Scheme (NAIS) for offering yield-based crop protection to farmers in 50 identified districts of India.
The scheme of yield-based crop insurance will include losses due to natural calamities, post-harvest as well as pre-sowing, diseases and pests. The weather-related risks will include excess rainfall or shortage of rainfall, variations in temperature as well as fluctuations in humidity. For the kharif crops, the rainfall parameter will be included. Similarly, for the rabi crops, rainfall, temperature humidity as well as combination of other parameters will be included.
It is important to note that domestic agriculture insurance premium market costs around 5000 crore Rupees. Weather insurance schemes will help in immediate compensation on the basis of objective data which will be sourced by the Indian Meteorological department. This insurance scheme will also help the farmers in providing flexibility for taking up the insurance for particular critical stage of the growth of crops or for overall crop cycle.
There is also the Modified National Agricultural Insurance Scheme which provides insurance to the farmers from the yield-based risks along with other risks during the crop cycle. The Union Government as well as the State Government subsidise the premiums which are paid by the farmers, while the insurer bears the claims.