Centre waives Aadhaar requirement for PM-Kisan pay out

Last Updated 09 October 2019, 18:15 IST

As election season looms, farmers will not be required to submit their Aadhaar card details to receive the third installment of Rs 2,000 under the income support initiative— Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-Kisan) scheme.

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on Wednesday relaxed till November 30 the mandatory requirement of Aadhaar seeding of date for transferring the third installment to farmers' bank accounts, citing the impending Rabi season.

Farmers form a key voter base in the poll-bound states of Maharashtra and Haryana, where the BJP is looking forward to retain power.

Under the PM-Kisan scheme, Aadhaar seeding of farmers' data was made mandatory for transfer of installments to bank accounts.

However, the government cited the Rabi season and the ongoing festive season as the reason to waive off the Aadhaar requirement till November 30.

“Non-seeding of beneficiaries' details with Aadhaar number will delay the release of further installments and will cause discontentment among the farmers,” an official statement said here.

Under PM-Kisan scheme, the government is providing annually Rs 6,000 in three equal installments to 14 crore farmers. The amount is directly transferred into the bank accounts of the beneficiaries through direct benefit transfer (DBT) mode.

Aadhaar seeding was mandated to avail the installment after August 1, 2019. However, it was exempted to farmers of Assam, Meghalaya and Jammu and Kashmir till March 2020.

“The mandatory requirement of Aadhaar seeding was taking time and therefore we have relaxed the norm till November 30,” Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar told media after the meeting.

The minister said that as many as 14 crore farmers were expected to get income support to the tune of Rs 87,000 crore. Already, 7 crore farmers have received the benefit.

The government also said the mandatory requirement will remain applicable for release of benefits with effect from December 1, 2019.

Adequate measures will be taken to validate the data before payment is made.

More than Rs 27,000 crore has already been released under the scheme through the first installment to 6.76 crore, second installment to 5.14 crore beneficiaries and third installment to 1.74 crore beneficiaries, the statement added.

(Published 09 October 2019, 13:08 IST)

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