Over 5.36 lakh farmers of 20 districts who were affected by the cyclone Nisha in November last year would be given a compensation of Rs. 325.83 crore during October 5-10, Agriculture Minister Veerapandi S. Arumugam said on Friday.

This was to enable the farmers to draw fresh loans from banks for undertaking the Samba cultivation. The amount to be disbursed included a premium of Rs. 19.353 crore of the Agricultural Insurance Company of India. What was going to be released to the farmers was the share of the State government.

For the crop loss suffered by the farmers during the cyclone, about Rs. 651.66 crore was assessed as the quantum of compensation, of which the State government’s share was around Rs. 306.5 crore. The farmers were from the districts of Tiruvarur, Nagapattinam, Thanjavur, Ramanathapuram, Pudukottai, Cuddalore, Sivaganga, Tiruchi, Madurai, Tiruvannamalai, Virudhunagar, Kancheepuram, Villupuram, Perambalur, Karur, Tiruvallur, Salem, Krishnagiri, Tirunelveli and Theni.

On the receipt of the Centre’s share, the remaining sum of Rs. 325.83 crore would be paid to the farmers during the second instalment, the Minister, in a statement, said.

During 2007-2008, a compensation of about Rs. 280 crore was given to 2,84,740 farmers.

The Minister added that the National Agricultural Insurance Scheme was being implemented in the State since the Kharif season of 2000. Only farmer borrowers were covered under the scheme. After the present government took office in 2006, the scheme was extended to other farmers and the government sanctioned 50 per cent subsidy on premium.

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