Upto Rs.30,000 crore central aid for pending Maharashtra irrigation works

Mumbai, May 3 (IANS) The central government will give between Rs.22,000-Rs.30,000 crore over the next three years to complete various pending small and medium irrigation projects in the drought-hit areas of Maharasthra, it was announced on Tuesday.

The decision was taken at a joint meeting of union Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari, Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, under the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana.

The pending projects will be taken up through the Accelerated Irrigation Benefit Programme, and a proposal will be brought up before the union cabinet soon, Gadkari said.

“Maharashtra ia a major focus state as it has a lot of irrigation potential which has not yet been realised,” he added, not the drought-hit regions of Vidarbha and Marathwada would be benefited.

Uma Bharti agreed to take up 132 projects falling in 14 suicide-prone districts of Marathwada (34) and Vidarbha (98) as “special projects” worth Rs.7,188 crores.

On its part, Maharashtra has shortlisted 26 AIBP projects under the PMKSY in a 60:40 ratio to which she accorded in-principle approval.

Fadnavis sought a special package for the state reeling under four consecutive years of drought, and urgency to increase the irrigation potential in the state which currently stood at only 18 percent, by providing central aid to complete the long-pending Ghosikhurd and Tapi recharge irrigation projects.

He said that a joint team of central and state officials will be set up to chart a future plan for Ghosikhurd project and its report would be submitted shortly which Uma Bharti agreed to onsider on priority basis.

Maharashtra ministers Sudhir Mungantiwar, Girish Mahajan and Vijay Shivtare were also present at the meeting.

–IANS

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