The Centre is weighing a host of options to provide income support (cash transfers) to farmers and other low-income population with an underlying notion that the huge financial resources for the venture will be shared between it and the state governments. The fiscal burden will shift to the next fiscal year, giving room for the Centre to simultaneously rework some subsidies being given to farmers such as that on fertilisers and crop loans.
According to official sources privy to the discussions, cash transfer of Rs 4,000/acre in a year by the Centre for land-owning farmers appears to be the proposal that has gained the most traction.
Although whether this is to be open-ended to include all farmers or restricted to small & marginal and medium farmers, is still to be decided. The states are expected to make a matching contribution to make the combined cash transfers to be substantial.