Nitish govt to provide irrigation water to every farm land in next five years: minister

·3-min read

Patna, Mar 2 (PTI) The Nitish Kumar government said on Tuesday that it has taken a decision to provide irrigation water to every agricultural land in Bihar in the next five years.

The scheme to make available water to every agri field will be provided under Saat Nischay (Seven Resolves) part 2'- which found its mention in the budget for the fiscal 2021-22, Water Resources Minister Sanjay Kumar Jha said in the Legislative Assembly.

The ambitiou project was implemented immediately after Nitish Kumar-led NDA ministry came back to power in Bihar in November last year, the minister said while giving reply to the debate in the house on the budgetary demand of Rs 4074.38 crore of his department for the financial year 2021-22.

On completion of seven resolves-I, the state government has announced that it will implement the second part of the seven resolves during present five year term of the new government.

'In fulfilment of the chief minister's commitment, the department will provide water to every farm land for irrigation purposes in the next five years, Jha, a close confidant of the CM, said.

The state level technical survey for the purpose began on January 18 this year and it will be completed within 100 days, he said, adding that the exercise is being carried out to make assessment of the optimum capacity.

The department has prepared 'sinchai nischay' website and 'sinchai nischay' mobile app for the purpose, he said.

The survey team comprises officials from five departments including water resources, minor irrigation, agriculture, panchayati raj and energy, the minister said.

Giving details of some other initiatives, Jha said the four major towns of Rajgir, Bodhgaya, Gaya and Nawada know for their historical, tourist and religious importance would be provided piped drinking water round the year through a 148.77 km pipeline under 'Ganga Water Lift Scheme'.

Out of 148.77 km pipeline, 65.72 km pipeline has already been laid, which is around 48 per cent of the project, Jha said.

The water supply through pipeline will begin by the end of September 2021 in Rajgir, Bodhgaya and Gaya in the first phase while Nawada will be covered in the second round under the project, he added.

Under the scheme, water from Ganga will be lifted during four months of the monsoon in various reservoirs and will be supplied by a pipeline, the minister said, adding work is under progress for setting up water treatment plant for Rajgir, Bodhgaya and Gaya.

The minister said that the government is building a rubber dam to retain water in Falgu river near Vishnupad temple in Gaya where people from the country and foreign gather in large numbers for 'Pind Daan' (ancestor worship).

Stating that this would be the first of its kind rubber dam in the state, Jha said that the work on the project has begun and it will be completed by October 2023 at an estimated cost of Rs 266 crore.

The Kosi and Mechi river linking project has got the approval of technical advisory committee and Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) in the year 2019 and ministry of Jal Shakti has also given its 'investment clearance' nod on December 8 last year, he said.

Pitching for the river interlinking programme to be accorded the status of a 'national project', Jha said that the high power steering committee of the central government has made a recommendation to this effect in November last year.

If Rs 4900 crore Kosi-Mechi river interlinking project is declared as a 'national project', then the majority funding of the project will be borne by the centre, he said.

He said the project will not only prevent recurring floods in north Bihar, but also irrigate over 2.14 lakh hectares of cultivable land in Araria, Purnea, Kishanganj and Katihar districts, collectively called Seemanchal region.

The budgetary proposal of the department was passed by a voice vote amid a walkout by the opposition members who expressed dissatisfaction over the minister's reply. PTI AR SNS SNS