Centre’s crop insurance scheme aimed at taking away farmer’s money: Rahul Gandhi

Taking on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress president Rahul Gandhi on February 3 said the Centre’s crop insurance scheme is aimed at taking away farmers income to fill up pockets of big businessmen.

At his first rally in Bihar after taking over as party president, Gandhi accused the Nitish Kumar government in the state of making “empty promises” like Modi.

He promised that if the Congress is voted to power in the Lok Sabha polls a number of steps would be taken to deal with farm distress and unemployment.

Raising the slogan of “chowkidaar chor hai” (the watchman is the thief) — an allusion to Modi, Gandhi accused the NDA government at the Centre of committing irregularities in the Rafale deal.

He alleged that policies of the Modi government, including crop insurance, were “aimed at taking away hard-earned money of farmers to fill up the pockets of big businessmen”.

In contrast, he said, his party’s governments in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh waived farm loans within a few days of coming to power.

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel and Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot were also present at the rally.

Besides, alliance partners like RJD’s Tejashwi Yadav, former Union minister Sharad Yadav and former Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi were present.


Underwriting practices vary across insurance companies

Pradeep Gaur/Mint

Pradeep Gaur/Mint

Can a dent on the car be reason enough for not giving it insurance coverage? My car’s insurance is due for renewal and they are asking me to fix the dent on my own.

—Rakesh Sundria

Underwriting practices vary across insurers. However, it is not usual to deny coverage due to a pre-existing dent, or ask that an old damage be repaired first. Usually, insurers will take a sign-off on the pre-issuance inspection report and clearly state that the pre-existing damage is excluded from insurance.

In case you are already insured, you should get your car repaired via the existing insurer. However, you should factor in the cost of losing the no-claim bonus on renewal premium. Alternately, you could look for an insurer who does not insist on pre-issuance inspection or getting the car repaired first.

I’m going to the United States for seven months, for an office project. I have a health insurance (individual cover) with global coverage. Will this suffice for any medical exigencies during my stay abroad?

—Shahana Rasool

You should check for restrictions on international treatment in your health insurance plan. Most Indian plans limit the coverage to specific ailments and geographies, and have a restrictive claims process. Also, the sum assured is often inadequate for the high cost of treatment abroad.

In case you find such restrictions in your plan, you should buy a standard travel insurance. This plan will cover emergency medical costs. Additionally, it covers accidental death, disability, loss of personal belongings, and out-of-pocket consequential costs due to flight or baggage delays. Your travel insurance plan will give you higher coverage for emergency international treatment as compared to a standard health insurance plan.

However, most overseas travel plans require that your travel should be for less than a certain number of days. As you are travelling for seven months, declare this properly to your insurer.

I am going on a backpacking tour of Europe next month and my travel agent is insisting that I buy additional health insurance cover. Wouldn’t my existing individual health insurance take care of it? It is just a 15-day tour and I don’t want to spend extra for this.

—Rohit Gangwar

The standard health insurance plan does not cover treatments taken outside India. Moreover, given the high cost of treatment abroad, the sum assured of a local health insurance plan is generally inadequate. I recommend that you buy a standard travel insurance plan. It will cost less than Rs.1,000 for a 30-year-old to get Rs.30 lakh of emergency medical expenses cover for 15 days.

In this plan, you will also get coverage for accidental death and disability, loss of personal belongings, and out-of-pocket consequential costs due to flight or baggage delays.


Government Acting Against Firms Violating Health Insurance Guidelines

Government Acting Against Firms Violating Health Insurance Guidelines
New Delhi: The government is taking action against companies not authorised to sell health insurance but were doing so. Responding to a supplementary in the Question Hour, Minister of State for Finance Santosh Gangwar said the government was vigilant towards such acts by certain companies and investigation was on in some cases and fines have been imposed in a few cases.

In the written response, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley listed out 13 insurance companies which have violated health insurance regulations, circulars and file and use guidelines.

These include New India Assurance, Bharati Axa General Insurance, Bajaj Allianz Gen Insurance, Future General Insurance, L and T General Insurance, Shriram General Insurance, Max Bupa Health Insurance, United India Insurance, Cholamandalam M S General Insurance, ICICI Lombard and Reliance General Insurance.


Mr Gangwar said people were availing insurance schemes like Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana which provide insurance cover at a very low premium.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)