85,559 Ha of irrigation potential created in Vid in 4 yrs

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 06 Jun 2018 11:11:54


By Kartik Lokhande,

Govt spends Rs 15,070 cr in 4 years to create the irrigation potential

CM’s ‘War Room’ ensures effective monitoring of progress of the projects

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led Government in Maharashtra has been able to give a major boost to irrigation facilities in rainfed region of Vidarbha in its tenure so far. In around four years, State Government has created irrigation potential of a whopping 85,559 hectares in the region. Much of the credit for the achievement goes to ‘War Room’ set up by Devendra Fadnavis, Chief Minister, to monitor the progress of the irrigation projects in Vidarbha.

This is no mean achievement considering that the irrigation potential created in Vidarbha between 1997 (when Vidarbha Irrigation Development Corporation (VIDC) was established) and 2012, was 3.82 lakh hectares. This figure of irrigation potential created in the region in 15 years can be found in the White Paper on Irrigation published by the erstwhile Congress-NCP led Democratic Front Government in November 2012.

Against this backdrop, creation of 85,559 hectares of irrigation potential in the region in around four years is an achievement. This irrigation potential includes 56,426 hectares created under Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY). The scheme includes big projects like Gosikhurd national project, Lower Wardha, Bembla, Khadakpurna, Bawanthadi, and Dongargaon. The irrigation potential has been created in only three years in case of projects under PMKSY. Further, irrigation potential of 22,482 hectares has been created under backlog removal programme.

Avinash Surve, Executive Director of VIDC, told ‘The Hitavada’ that between April 1, 2014 and March 2018, as many as 116 irrigation projects in Vidarbha region had got revised administrative approvals from the Government. Besides, the Government had made available Rs 15,070 crore for the projects in Vidarbha. “The allocation for irrigation projects in the region increased by Rs 1,000 crore per year, compared to the allocation previously,” he said. Obviously, he added, the projects in the region got a big
boost and irrigation potential created in around four years indicated the same.

During the four years since April 1, 2014, gorge-filling was done in case of 45 projects. The water storage of projects under VIDC increased by 20 TMC taking the overall storage to 569.26 MM3. With the increased storage and additional irrigation potential created, actual irrigation in the year 2016-17 was 7,93,280 hectares, Surve said.

Surve said that there were 12 priority projects including Lower Pedhi in Amravati district, Jigaon in Buldhana, Chichdoh barrage in Gadchiroli district, all minor projects in Washim district, LIS projects in Nagpur district including Tedhva Shioni, Lower Chulband, and Jhansi Nagar, and Palasgaon Amdi in Chandrapur district. “All the projects are at commissioning stage. We are expecting the projects to be commissioned in July. With electrical and mechanical integration, these projects will be able to provide water to people,” he informed ‘The Hitavada’.

In 2016-17 alone, an amount of around Rs 2,000 crore was spent on land acquisition. In four years, VIDC has acquired 10,950 hectares of land for its projects. Of this, total 2,665 hectares has been acquired through direct purchase. Chief Minister’s ‘War Room’ has not only ensured that the hurdles in faster execution of projects is achieved, but also helped remove vacancies in Water Resources Department and irrigation development corporations. At the end of December 2017, total 1,202 posts of Junior Engineers were filled up across the State. These included as many as 400 posts in Vidarbha region alone.


VIDC projects under CM’s ‘War Room’
There are 20 projects under Vidarbha Irrigation Development Corporation (VIDC) that have been included in Chief Minister’s ‘War Room’. These include Gosikhurd national project that will benefit Nagpur, Bhandara, and Chandrapur districts; Lower Wardha (Wardha district), Bawanthadi (Bhandara), Kalpathri (Gondia), Rajegaon Kati lift irrigation scheme or LIS (Gondia), Satrapur LIS (Nagpur), Kosari (Gadchiroli), Yengalkheda (Gadchiroli), Kotgal LIS (Gadchiroli), Dongargaon (Chandrapur), Bembla (Yavatmal), Wasni medium project (Amravati), Chandrabhaga barrage (Amravati), Wai minor project (Akola), Shahapur (Akola), Palaskhed minor project (Washim), Mirzapur minor project (Washim), Kohal minor project (Yavatmal), Rahera minor project (Buldhana), Jigaon (since April 2017) in Buldhana district.