Masoodi demands implementation of Crop Insurance Scheme in J&K

Excelsior Correspondent

SRINAGAR, July 27: The Jammu and Kashmir National Conference Member of the Parliament from Anantnag, Hasnain Masoodi on Thursday asked the Government to intervene and give aid packages to the affected farmers and implement Crop Insurance Scheme that covers trees or root stock in Kashmir.
Raising issues confronting the horticulture sector in Kashmir under rule 377 in Lok Sabha, Masoodi said horticulture contributes to more than 8.2 percent of Jammu & Kashmir’s GDP. “Multiple spells of rains followed by hailstorm caused huge damage to the orchards across the districts of Kashmir – Shopian, Pulwama, Kulgam and Anantnag. The fruit laden trees including apple, cherry and pear orchards have suffered extensive damage, endangering the livelihoods of around 45 lakh farmers,” he said.
Masoodi contended that the horticulture sector, according to estimates, might have witnessed a loss of Rs 200 crores. “It is pertinent to point out that the fruit industry has suffered huge losses due to closure of NH- 44 last year and slashing down the import duty of the Washington Apple by 20 percent. In the light of this event, the Crop Insurance Schemes become extremely important as it can provide financial protection to farmers against losses incurred due to natural calamities or other unforeseen circumstances,” he added.
Echoing the sentiments of the Fruit Association of Jammu and Kashmir, which has been demanding compensation for the losses incurred, Masoodi asked the Government to address their demands without any further delay.