Hyderabad: Officials of the Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India have sought some time to discuss the issue of relaxing the age limit for insurance coverage to Telangana farmers under the Farmers’ Life Insurance Policy Scheme which the State government wants to implement from June 2.
State Agriculture Department officials have been in consultation with the local LIC office over the drafting of the guidelines for the scheme as per directions from Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao. The State government had already allocated Rs 500 crore for the insurance scheme in the 2018-19 budget and has plans to launch it on June 2, the State Formation Day. The Chief Minister, during a recent review meeting with agriculture department, asked the officials to prepare clear guidelines for the scheme in consultation with the LIC.
The insurance scheme for which the State government will pay the premia, providing a Rs 5 lakh life cover, announced by the Chief Minister, is unique in the country with plans to include all farmers in Telangana.
However, during the discussions between the government and LIC, the existing age limit for issuing life cover by the LIC was found to be limiting in terms of the number of farmers who can be covered by the proposed scheme. As per LIC norms, the company provides life cover only to people who are not older than 55 years. The agriculture department, has, however, informed the LIC that since many farmers fall in the 50-70 year age group, the LIC should make an exception in case of the Telangana government’s proposed scheme to include all those farmers who are older than 55 years.
According to agriculture department officials, they stressed the importance of extending the age limit by LIC to ensure inclusion in the scheme of a large section of Telangana farmers, estimated to be about 20% of the 58 lakh farmers in the State.
It was learnt that the LIC officials sought a few more days to confirm the scheme details with the government as they were discussing these details with their head office in Mumbai.
The State government, according to agriculture department officials, is expected to pay a premium ranging between Rs 800 and Rs 1,100 per farmer for the scheme. This works out to about Rs 580 crore for the 58 lakh farmers that the government wants to provide life insurance coverage to under the proposed scheme.