Telangana seeks Rs 2000 crore Central aid for Devadula irrigation project

Irrigation Minister T Harish Rao has urged Union water resources minister Uma Bharti to give Rs 2,000 crore for completion of Devadula irrigation project.

Harish Rao called on Uma Bharti in Delhi on Tuesday and requested her to release Rs 2,000 crore more for Devadula project. The Centre had so far released Rs 300 crore under first instalment and assured to release another Rs 300 crore as second instalment for Devadula.

Stating that there were special conditions like drought and other problems under Devadula ayacut area, Harish Rao requested the Union minister to release Rs 700 crore Central government grant towards Devadula, Rajiv Bhima and SRSP-2 irrigation projects as a special case.

Speaking to reporters later in Delhi, Rao said the state government is planning to release more funds for the irrigation projects in backward areas and complete them on a priority basis.

Harish Rao was in Delhi to attend the Prime Minister Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY) meeting chaired by Uma Bharti. Of the 99 irrigation projects sanctioned under PMKSY, 11 projects were in Telangana state.

In the PMKSY meeting, Harish Rao requested the Central government to see that the loans obtained for PMKSY projects under Nabard should be outside the purview of Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) Act, so that the state’s borrowing capacity would increase.

Rao also reiterated state’s demand to release Rs 5,000 crore Central aid for Mission Kakatiya.

Harish Rao further told reporters that the second meeting of the Cabinet sub-committee on Brijesh Kumar Tribunal order would be held on Oct 29 in Hyderabad. Senior counsel Vaidyanathan was invited for that meeting, the minister said.

After eliciting the views of Vaidyanathan, the irrigation department would decide the future course of action on the order of Brijesh Kumar Tribunal.

Meanwhile, in a press release on Tuesday, Harish Rao termed state BJP president K Laxman’s statement that farmers were not getting remunerative prices for their produce as absurd.

He said that the Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) would open 45 purchasing centres by October end and another 45 centres in the first week of November. “Farmers were getting more than the minimum support price for their produce. All BJP leaders are blind to this,” Harish Rao said.

Source: The New Indian Express

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