The central government will launch tomorrow water conservation measures in the drought- prone regions of Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Odisha to increase the area of irrigated land. Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti will launch some minor irrigation works in Bandri in Sagar district of Bundelkhand region of Madhya Pradesh. Similar projects will be launched in Maharashtra’s Marathwada region and Odisha’s Kalahandi, Bolangir and Koraput (KBK) regions too. The ministry, along with the state governments concerned, will repair, renovate and restore water bodies in the three regions and revive irrigation potential through surface minor irrigation under the initiative.
Speaking to reporters here, Bharti said the ministry has prepared a master plan for artificial recharge of ground water in Bundelkhand region, portion of which falls in Uttar Pradesh too. In the region’s areas falling in Madhya Pradesh, around 2,000 percolation tanks, 55,000 small check dams/nala embankments and 17,000 recharge shafts have been identified for strengthening, an official release said. It has identified around 1,100 percolation tanks, 14,000 small check dams/nala embankments and 7,200 recharge pits/shafts for repair/renovation in Uttar Pradesh.
The government plans to construct 259 wells to explore ground water in six districts in Bundelkhand region of Madhya Pradesh. Similarly, 234 wells are proposed to be built in five districts of Bundelkhand falling in Uttar Pradesh — Banda, Hamirpur, Jalaun, Chitrakoot and Mahoba. The government has planned to implement national groundwater management improvement schemes (NGMIS) in areas of the Bundelkhand region in Uttar Pradesh, aiming to effectively improve groundwater conditions in stressed pockets over an area of 11,851 sq km.
In Madhya Pradesh, area measuring 8,139 sq km will be covered under the NGMIS. Bharti said it is proposed to irrigate 1,71,030 hectares and 68,007 hectares of land in areas of Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh falling in the Bundelkhand region under the incentivisation scheme for bridging irrigation gap. The scheme will benefit Jhansi, Jalaun, Hamirpur, Lalitpur and Banda districts of Uttar Pradesh and Tikamgarh and Datia districts of Madhya Pradesh,, she added.
The government has proposed seven schemes for Marathwada region, aiming to irrigate 53,365 hectares of land by bridging the gap between irrigation potential created (IPC) and irrigation potential utilised (IPU). The initiative will benefit Aurangabad, Latur, Nanded, Prabhani, Nanded, Solapur and Osmanabad districts and involve an expenditure of Rs 250 crore. Apart from this, the government proposes to cover 3,727 sq km area in the region under the NGMIS, involving an expenditure of around Rs 380 crore.