The proposal to acquire a long-term loan of Rs 150 billion has been approved by the Maharashtra Cabinet towards the completion of on-going irrigation projects in the state.
The step is a move in the direction of increasing irrigational capacity by approximately 0.29 million hectares, in the span of three years facilitated by the additional funding. Subsequently, 891 million cubic meters of water storage will also become available, thereby, cultivating a more efficient irrigation mechanism.
Currently, the under-construction projects amount to 313 with a total cost of Rs. 935.7 billion.
Annually, the Water Resources Department is allotted Rs 100 billion by the State Government, with a focus on garnering additional funds by pursuing various sources- which is inclusive of seeking assistance from the Central Government and taking loans through NABARD.
The projects to benefit from the loan are spread over Vidarbha, Marathwada and run along the rest of Maharashtra. Apart from these, reportedly, 26 projects have been shortlisted under the Prime Minister's Irrigation Scheme. NABARD has warranted Rs 192.51 billion as a long-term loan for the selected ventures at an interest rate of 6 per cent. The Central Government has also put in an extra funding of Rs 31.47 billion.
Additionally, Maharashtra Government’s special scheme - Baliraja Sanjivani, umbrellas over 91 projects that belong to farmer suicide affected areas as well as drought stricken lands as a means of providing relief to farmers.