Come June 1, the government will converge two insurance schemes for fishermen, which might help in reducing the premium burden and easing implementation issues, sources said. Sources have revealed that for the fishermen insurance scheme under the Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY) and the Group Accident Insurance Scheme (GAIS) will be converged to provide comprehensive insurance coverage of Rs 5 lakh for fishermen (Rs 3 lakh under GAIS for accidental death or permanent total disability and Rs 2 lakh under PMSBY)

Until now, sources have indicated that coverage of Rs 2 lakh was offered under PMSBY, while coverage of Rs 5 lakh was provided under GAIS. For GAIS, a premium of Rs 91 per fisherman per year was calculated based on the last available data, while under PMSBY, a premium of Rs 20 per fisherman was calculated, sources said.

As a fully subsidised scheme, fishermen are not required to pay any premium, with the entire burden borne by the government. Once the schemes are merged, the premium burden might decrease, as under the new method, coverage of Rs 3 lakh will be provided under GAIS, while coverage under PMSBY will remain at Rs 2 lakh. “However, the exact reduction in the premium is currently unknown, as the new cycle will commence in June,” said an industry expert.

Around 3.2 million fishermen are covered under these insurance schemes each year.