Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has sought a supplementary package from the Centre to tackle drought in 28,000 villages of Maharashtra, in a meeting with Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh in New Delhi on Wednesday.
Fadnavis said, “The state government has already submitted a memorandum seeking a supplementary drought package after it included 12,500 more villages in the list of 15,500 villages which were declared drought-hit.”
The state government has sought a package of Rs 7,188 crore for Vidarbha and Marathwada. It has also sought a Rs 2,500 crore package for tackling the drought in villages in western Maharashtra.
Of the total 40,000 villages, at least 15,500 are facing serious water scarcity and 12,500 are reeling under agriculture drought. On May 7, the Chief Minister made a comprehensive presentation at a meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The state has placed a Rs 30,000 crore package for both short and long term measures which includes funds for 26 irrigation projects under the Prime Minister Krishi Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY).
Fadnavis revealed, “The Centre has already given us Rs 3,500 crore. We are seeking Rs 9,500 crore for relief and irrigation projects for the chronic districts under drought in regions of Vidarbha, Marathwada and western Maharashtra.” The drought mitigation plans for the 16 worst-hit districts are being considered by the Centre. The funds are required for 132 irrigation projects, of which 98 are in Vidarbha, which would require Rs 4,098 crore. In Marathwada, for 38 projects the amount required is Rs 3,090 crore.
Earlier, the state had send its proposal for Rs 4,000 crore drought aid to the Centre, which has provided Rs 3,500 crore.
Unlike in the past, this is also the first time the state government has decided to extend the relief compensation package for crop losses in rabi season.