|Maharashtra Tuesday got the approval for 107 irrigation projects worth Rs. 10,686 crores in Vidarbha, Marathwada and other drought and suicide prone regions of Maharashtra, which, on completion, would enhance irrigation potential by 1.46 lakh hectares.|
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis met Nripendra Misra, Principal Secretary to the PM, and other senior officials at Niti Aayog in Delhi to get the proposal, along with the formula of revenue-sharing, sanctioned. It was followed by another meeting between Fadnavis and Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. Later, Fadnavis also held a meeting with Union Minister for Water Resources and Surface Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari.
The Centre will provide 25 per cent financial assistance for the projects, while 75 per cent funds would be provided through loans from NABARD. Out of these 107 projects, it is estimated that 86 minor and medium irrigation projects worth Rs 6,000 crore would be completed by 2018-end. The remaining would be completed by 2019-2020.
Fadnavis said, “The projects are extremely significant in transformation of lives of farmers and the agriculture sector in drought and suicide prone districts of Vidarbha, Marathwada and parts of North Maharashtra and Western Maharashtra.”
To complete the work in a time-bound manner, he said, “There are 14 drought-hit districts in Vidarbha and Marathwada, which are among the most vulnerable. Apart from these, there are some irrigation projects in drought-prone region of Western Maharashtra and North Maharashtra.”
Total projects in Vidarbha are 81, worth Rs. 5,344 crore, and irrigation potential of 1.06 lakh hectares. Marathwada has 26 projects for which Rs. 1,842 crore would be required. District-wise projects are as follows: Amravati (24), Akola (11), Washim (18), Yavatwal (15), Buldhana (10), Wardha (3), Aurangabad (5), Jalna (4), Parbhani (1), Nanded (4), Beed (1), Latur (9), Osmanabad (2).
On April 23, the chief minister had requested for the package in a meeting of Niti Aayog and a follow up with the principal secretary to PM. The revised proposal was submitted on May 15. The Ministry of Water Resources had requested some additional information on June 1.
THE INDIAN EXPRESS