Centre assures all help to Maharashtra to complete stranded irrigation projects. 

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The Centre has assured all help to Maharashtra to complete most of the pending irrigation projects. Union Minister for Shipping, Road Transport and Highways, Mr. Nitin Gadkari and the Minister for Water Resources, Ms. Uma Bharti today held a review meeting of state’s projects under the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY) and ongoing projects under the Accelerated Irrigation Benefit Programme (AIBP)  at the Sahyadri State Guest House in Mumbai with the Maharashtra Chief Minister Mr. Devendra Fadnavis

The centre has indicated to give Rs 22,000- Rs 30,000 crore rupees over the next three years to complete the ongoing projects. The Centre is particularly keen to provide funds to complete small and medium irrigation projects in drought affected areas of Vidarbha and Marathwada said Mr. Gadkari.  He said a proposal will be brought before the Union Cabinet soon.  Mr. Gadkari said the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana is aimed at accelerating irrigation potential in the country. “Maharashtra is a major focus state, as it has a lot of irrigation potential which has not yet been realized”.

Maharashtra has shortlisted 26 national irrigation projects under the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana. Mr. Fadnavis had requested the Centre to consider a special package for Maharashtra in the wake four consecutive years of drought. The state government has also highlighted the urgency to increase the irrigation potential in the state, which is currently only about 18 per cent. The state has also requested central aid for completing the long pending Ghosikhurd irrigation project and the Tapi recharge irrigation project.

The Centre has announced the setting up of a committee under the Chairmanship of Special Secretary, Ministry of Water Resources to look into the matter of Ghosikhurd project.