Cyclone Biparjoy, which made landfall in Gujarat on June 15, 2023, has now reached Rajasthan. It has left a trail of destruction in its wake—there are multiple reports of power outages, property damage, ravaged cars and more.
It has become all too common to hear about natural disasters and the damage they cause in terms of life, health and assets. Earlier this week, Delhiites and residents of some parts of north India also felt mild tremors.
As a personal finance professional, one of the first thoughts that crosses one’s mind is the need for individuals to protect their life and assets against disasters like these.
The list that immediately comes to mind is life, health, car and home insurance covers; the list can be a little longer if we think of some other aspects of our lives. The list will also depend on the number of assets you have, how much they cost and how much you can afford to pay towards insurance over other necessities that are more immediate.
While a quick search will show up many such lists, one wonders if it is fair to make those recommendations to the low-income group, which often is hit the hardest by these events.
So, when a flood warning is issued in Delhi every few years, it’s the people living in low-lying areas or the floodplains of Yamuna who worry the most. The majority of these people may not have insurance needs at the top of their minds.
With the number of natural calamities only going up over the years—the Covid-19 pandemic being the biggest of all in recent years—and the threat of global warming ticking up, maybe it’s time for the government to think about ways to financially protect the disadvantaged against disasters, besides issuing red alerts. “Insurance For All” needs to become a reality sooner than later.
Of course, there’s no telling when the tables turn for the larger population as well, as has happened many times in the past.
Here’s a list of some stories, some recent and some plucked from the past, which will give you some ideas on protection and investment in these changing times.
The recent news around an earthquake and a cyclone begs us to rethink our insurance coverage. If you don’t have one of these five must-have covers, anytime is a good time to buy. If the coverage is inadequate, consider a top up now.
Natural disasters don’t always sound imminent, but the annual monsoons can raise more immediate concerns. It’s always better to be prepared in advance against the monsoon mayhem. We have a three-pronged strategy for 360-degree protection against the monsoons. Enjoy the rain but take cover from the hailstorm.