In Chhattisgarh, only 12% of the expected amount of a crop insurance scheme reached farmers.
Bhan Sahu saw numerous farmers in despair, not only after losing their crops because of extreme weather conditions, but also for having been deceived by the government’s promises to insure their losses. Indeed, in Chhattisgarh, the crops are frequently destroyed because of adverse weather conditions - insufficient or excessive waterfall, that both have fatal consequences for agriculture. The regular destruction of their crops drastically impacts the farmers’ lives: “either people saved money on precedent crops sales, or they have to take loans. Sometimes, they get into very deep debt”.
To help the farmers overcome this situation, the government framed a crop insurance scheme. Farmers have to contribute Rs. 354 per acre, and they are supposed to be reimbursed Rs. 16,000 per acre if their crop happens to be completely destroyed. Unfortunately this program, which brought hope into the lives of so many, is very poorly implemented and the farmers actually received only a very small portion of the promised amount. “The farmers bear the consequences of the government’s inefficiency. The high officials have made promises they can’t meet, and there are people serving themselves at every step of the program."
Several farmers in this situation have come to Bhan Sahu. They all hope that making a video will be a way to advocate for the insurance money to actually reach them, and eventually bring relief to their situations.
We get a sense about the new farm bills passed by the Union govt of India from Video Volunteers correspondents, several of whom are farmers or who work with the community.
A river barrage project over Ganga in West Bengal has slowly destroyed the lives of those living in low-lying areas of the project.