Even as the state reels under an acute-water scarcity like situation, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis today said his government was committed to provide drinking water to the people.
“The state at present is reeling under an acute water scarcity-like situation. The government is committed to provide drinking water to the people in any case,” Fadnavis said after the inauguration of Krishi Vikas exhibition here.
“The government is also making efforts to make the land rich in water so that farmers get water for irrigation. Under ‘Magel Tyala Shettale’ (a scheme to provide farm-ponds), the government proposes to build five lakh farm lakes in next five years,” the Chief Minister said.
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Parts of Maharashtra especially the Marathwada region are reeling under severe drought.
Stating that the backlog in agriculture pump connections in Vidarbha and Marathwada regions has been completely removed, Fadnavis lauded the success of the ‘Jalyukta Shivar Scheme’.
Jalyukta Shivar water conservation initiative, the flagship programme of Maharashtra government, involves deepening and widening of streams, construction of cement and earthen stop dams, work on nullahs and digging of farm ponds.
The Chief Minister further said for the first time in the history of the state, Rs 26,000 crore have been allotted for agriculture and allied sector.
Speaking on the occasion Union minister Nitin Gadkari called for deepening of rivers and nullahs around villages and towns and using excavated soil for laying ‘pandan’ roads (approach roads to farms.
The Union Highways minister informed that cement concrete roads worth Rs 2.50 lakh crore would be laid in Maharashtra this year.
Gadkari said the state has been given Rs 4,050 crore under Central road funds, which will help in increasing the length of national highways in the state to 22,000 km from the existing 5000 km.
He also said to boost dairy production in Vidarbha the government (Centre) has signed an agreement with New Delhi-based Mother Dairy which will soon be setting up a Rs 400 crore project in Nagpur.