Grand plan to increase irrigated area in the State

Grand plan to increase irrigated area in the State

Grand plan to increase irrigated area in the State

The State government will soon draw an action plan to increase the irrigated area in the State by an additional 9.25 lakh hectares in the next five years at a cost of
Rs 45,574 crore.

Addressing a press conference in Bangalore on Saturday, Water Resources Minister M B Patil said the irrigated area will be expanded by speedy completion of projects like the Upper Krishna stage-3, Yettinahole, Upper Bhadra, implementation of  Paramashivaiah report on utilisation of west- flowing rivers, besides by using modern technology and efficient water management techniques.

The government also plans to increase the irrigation potential in the Cauvery basin by utilising micro-irrigation and sprinkler techniques. These measures, the minister said, would not only help in increasing the yield but also retaining the fertility of the soil.

Land acquisition

Patil said the water resources department was thinking of opening a separate wing for land acquisition on the lines of such a body for National Highways.

The minister pointed out the move would help in accelerating land acquisition and in better coordination when it comes to resettlement and rehabilitation. Patil said 1.55 lakh acres would be submerged due to raising of the height of Almatti dam to 524.25 m.

As many as 1.44 lakh people would have to be relocated. A separate wing for land acquisition and subsequent rehabilitation and resettlement would go a long way in streamlining the entire process, he said.

Cauvery levels

He said the present storage of water in the reservoirs of Cauvery basin including KRS, Hemavathi and Harangi was sufficient for meeting the drinking water requirements of Bangalore, Mysore and Mandya till June 30. Contingency plans would be evolved if the monsoon fails to meet the expectation next month, Patil said.

The water storage in KRS as on Saturday was 1.59 tmc ft; Hemavathi: 1.66 tmc ft and Harangi: 0.78 tmc ft.

The process of extracting the dead storage water has commenced.