The Maharashtra cabinet on Tuesday approved nearly Rs 12,672 crore additional funds to different projects in the state with the much-delayed Krishna Marathwada Irrigation Project getting a lion’s share of Rs 11,736 crore.
The Nagpur Metro in the hometown of Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis also received extra funds of Rs 599 crore, taking the total expenditure of the project to Rs 9,279 crore. The irrigation project had received its main administrative approval worth Rs 2,382 crore in August 2007. In 2009, the first renewed administrative approval worth Rs 4,845 crore was sanctioned with total area in Osmanabad and Beed districts of Marathwada to be benefited at an estimated Rs 1,14,731 hectare. The western part of Marathwada region, particularly Osmanabad district, is one of the most water scarce areas. The state government has proposed to transfer surplus water of 23.66 TMC from Krishna sub-basin and adjoining sub-basins in western Maharashtra. Out of 23.66 TMC of water, 17.98 TMC is proposed to be utilised for Osmanabad district and 5.68 TMC to be utilised in Beed. The proposed project is aimed at enhancing the income from the agriculture-based activities and boost the social and economic conditions of the farmers.
The delays in getting environmental clearance, increased land acquisition cost as well as changes in rate card have increased the cost of the project leading to the demand and approval of second renewed administrative approval worth Rs 11,736 crore for the project. After the cabinet meeting, Fadnavis said that unlike the previous Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government, the present government does not fear to take decisions for the state’s betterment.
The state government on Tuesday also extended nearly Rs 336 crore additional expenditure for Surewada lift irrigation scheme in Vidarbha’s Bhandara district which will bring nearly 5,000 hectare land from 28 villages from Bhandara and Gondia districts.
The Nagpur Metro Rail project phase 1 had been approved at an expenditure of Rs 8,680 crore which has now been increased by Rs 599 crore. The project, with a total length of 38.2 kilometres, was to be completed by April 2018.