As lakhs of small and marginal farmers in Odisha face uncertain times due to the Covid-19 induced lockdown, the state government on Friday transferred of ₹920 crore to the bank accounts of 42 lakh farmer families in Odisha under the Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA) scheme, its flagship farmer welfare scheme.
The assistance of ₹920 crore includes ₹556.64 crore given by the Centre under the PM Kisan scheme for Kharif-2021. Since 2020-21, the KALIA scheme has been merged with the PM-KISAN programme with the Centre giving ₹6000 a year to small and marginal farmers annually while the state provides ₹4,000 a year.
Chief minister Naveen Patnaik said though the state is currently facing the second wave of Covid-19 and undergoing lockdown, there are no restrictions for agricultural activities. The farmers can carry out agricultural activities with adherence to Covid-19 guidelines.
Under the scheme, financial assistance is provided to small and marginal farmers so that they can purchase inputs like seeds, fertilizers, pesticides and use assistance towards labour and other investments.
This apart, financial assistance is provided to each landless agricultural household for agriculture allied activities like small goat rearing unit, mini-layer unit, fishery kits for fisherman, mushroom cultivation and bee-keeping, etc.