With an eye on improving farm productivity, Narendra Modi government will spend Rs 50,000 crore over the next five years under the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY).
“It has been decided that in 5 years, Rs 50,000 crore from the central Budget would be utilised for the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana. States’ share will be over and above this,” Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said while communicating the Cabinet decision.
He further said: “This can also be utilised to help the material component in MNREGA (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act).”
The decision was taken at the meeting of Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday.
For the current fiscal, he said the allocation is Rs 5,300 crore.
The spending this year is expected to bring an additional 6 lakh hectares under irrigation while 5 lakh hectares will benefit from drip irrigation. That apart, 1,300 watershed projects have been marked for completion.
Currently, 142 million hectares are used for cultivation, of which only 45 per cent farm land is under irrigation.
“The major objective of the PMKSY is to achieve convergence of investments in irrigation at the field level, expand cultivable area under assured irrigation (har khet ko pani), improve on-farm water use efficiency to reduce wastage of water, enhance adoption of precision-irrigation and other water-saving technologies (more crop per drop),” he said.
Besides, the FM said the scheme is aimed at enhancing recharge of aquifers and introducing sustainable water conservation practices by exploring feasibility of re-using treated municipal water for peri-urban agriculture and attracting greater private investment in precision irrigation.
“The scheme also aims at bringing ministries, departments, agencies, research and financial institutions engaged in creation/recycling/potential recycling of water under a common platform so that a comprehensive and holistic view of the entire “water cycle” is taken into account and proper water budgeting is done for all sectors,” he said.
The programme architecture of PMKSY looks at a ‘decentralised state-level planning and execution’ structure in order to allow states to draw up a District Irrigation Plan (DIP) and a State Irrigation Plan (SIP), he said.
“DIP will have a holistic developmental perspective of the district outlining medium- to long-term developmental plans integrating three components namely, water sources, distribution network and water use application of the district to be prepared at two levels – the block and the district,” he said.
All structures created under the schemes will be geo-tagged, he added.
The programme will be supervised and monitored at the national level by an Inter-Ministerial National Steering Committee (NSC) under the Chairmanship of the Prime Minister with the Union Ministers concerned.
A National Executive Committee (NEC) is to be constituted under the Chairmanship of the Vice-Chairman, NITI Aayog, to oversee programme implementation, allocation of resources, inter-ministerial coordination, monitoring and performance assessment, addressing administrative issues and the like.