The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on Wednesday approved implementation of the ‘Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojna’ for 2021-26 that has a provision to fund 90 per cent of the water component for the Renukaji and Lahkwar dams which would eventually improve water supply to Delhi.
The scheme, an official statement said, would benefit about 22 lakh farmers, including 2.5 lakh scheduled caste and two lakh scheduled tribe farmers.
“Central funding of 90 per cent of water component for two national projects, namely Renukaji Dam Project (Himachal Pradesh) and Lakhwar Multipurpose Project (Uttarakhand) has been provisioned,” it said.
“The two projects would provide beginning of storage in Yamuna basin, benefitting six states of upper Yamuna basin, augmenting water supply to Delhi as well as Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan, and a major step towards rejuvenation of the Yamuna,” the statement said.
It also mentioned the central government’s flagship Accelerated Irrigation Benefit Programme (AIBP) and stated that it aims for financial support to irrigation projects.
The total additional irrigation potential creation targeted during 2021-26 under the AIBP is 13.88 lakh hectare, and apart from focused completion of 60 ongoing projects, including their 30.23 lakh hectare command area development, additional projects can also be taken up, the statement said.
The inclusion criteria have been relaxed for projects under tribal and drought prone areas.
On the Har Khet Ko Pani (HKKP) programme, the statement said that “it aims for increasing enhancement of physical access on the farm and expansion of cultivable area under assured irrigation”.
Under the HKKP, surface minor irrigation and repair-renovation-restoration of water bodies components of the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojna (PMKSY) is targeted to provide additional 4.5 lakh hectare irrigation, the statement said.
In view of the importance of rejuvenation of water bodies, the Cabinet has approved a paradigm shift in funding of their rejuvenation in both urban and rural areas, with significant expansion of their inclusion criteria, and enhancement of central assistance from 25 to 60 per cent in general areas, it said.
The statement said the ground water component of the HKKP, approved provisionally for 2021-22, targets creation of irrigation potential of 1.52 lakh hectare.
The watershed development component focuses on development of rainfed areas towards soil and water conservation, regeneration of ground water, arresting runoff and promoting extension activities related to water harvesting and management.
The approved watershed development component of the department of land resources envisages completion of sanctioned projects covering 49.5 lakh hectare rainfed and degraded lands to bring an additional 2.5 lakh hectare under protective irrigation, during 2021-26.
The statement said a specific provision for development of springsheds has been included in the programme.
Launched in 2015, the PMKSY is an umbrella scheme, providing central grants to state governments for specific activities.
These consist of two major components by the department of water resources, river development and Ganga rejuvenation — the AIBP and the HKKP, the statement said.
The HKKP, in turn, consists of four sub-components — command area development (CAD), surface minor irrigation (SMI), repair, renovation and restoration (RRR) of water bodies, and ground water development, it said.
In addition, the watershed development part is being implemented by the department of land resources.