Published On : Mon, May 29th, 2017

Gadkari pitches for bettering Maha’s irrigation system to contain farmers’ suicides

Nitin Gadkari

File Pic

Nagpur: Taming the agrarian crisis in Maharashtra, particularly in Vidarbha and Marathwada, seems to be the biggest challenge before Maharasthra Government. However, Union MInister for Road Trasnport and Shipping Nitin Gadkari wanted to stress out the farmers from the crisis through improvising irrigation facilities. The irrigation potential and 12 hours electricity supply would curb the farmers suicides in the state, stated Gadkari, at Gadkariwada on Sunday.

Lamenting over spate of farmers’ suicides in Maharashtra, Gadkari stated that the lack of irrigation facilities was responsible for the suicides. The suicides may be stopped after 50 per cent irrigation potential is created by the Government. However, he was satisfied over the Jal Yukta Shivar programme undertaken by the Devendra Fadnavis led Government to increase under ground water level. He appreciated Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Energy Minister Chandrashekhar Bawankule for providing 5 lakh electric pump connection to the farmers in last two years and hoped that they would provide additional 5 lakh pump connections in next two years.

Replying to a question, he said, the loan waiver is not the only solution to stop farmers suicides in the state. It is necessary to increase irrigation potential as well as provide supplementary business to the farmers to increase their financial position.

On development of MIHAN and New Airport issue, Gadkari said, Central Council of Ministers may take decision in couple of weeks regarding construction of new airport at Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport at Nagpur. The tender process will begin after taking nod of central cabinet. He said, an American Company has shown its interest to use facilities created in Maintenance and Repairing Overhaul (MRO) Unit in Nagpur. Presently, only 20 per cent capacity of MRO is being used by the Air India. The American company will maintain defence and domestic planes in the MRO. He said, Vedanta Group is interested in investing Rs 19,000 crore in MIHAN area. He said, several companies have started their work in Multimodal International Hub Airport at Nagpur (MIHAN). Yog Guru Ramdev Baba is emphasizing on manufacturing Ayurveda products at MIHAN in association with farmers. He will declare his policy in coming days, Gadkari added.

Gadkari said, the National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) will sign an agreement with Maharashtra Government on June 4 at Nagpur in presence of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Union Minister for Agriculture Radha Mohan Singh regarding milk revolution in 11 districts of Vidarbha and Marathwada. This include 7 districts of Vidarbha and 4 districts of Marathwada. Presently, the milk production is very less in Vidarbha and Marathwada. The NDDB will increase production upto 25 lakh liters in next two years in Vidarbha. The farmers will get rate of Rs 47 per litre for the milk production. Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) has given land to NDDB for opening of milk distribution centres.

He said, “We are working on manufacturing of incense sticks in Gadchiroli area to generate employment for 5,000 youths. A proposal for exporting of Honey is also in pipe line. He said, the fishing, incense sticks, honey and milk production can change the financial position of the farmers and tribals of the region.

Replying to another question, he said, “It is necessary to showcase tiger tourism to foreign tourists. Almost 350 tigers are in Tadoba and Pench Tiger Reserve. Presently, there is restrictions on number of tourist vehicles entering forest area. I have suggested Forest Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar to permit electric vehicles in Forest to reduce noise pollution and increase flow of tourists.”

Gadkari said, Central Government has proposed new railway lines at Itarsi- Nagpur, Nagpur-Nagbhir-Gadchiroli, and Nagpur-Wardha to Nanded. A road worth of Rs 16,000 crore will be constructed from Butibori to Ratnagiri.

Replying to a question, Gadkari said, Nagpur Improvement Trust (NIT) will construct 10,000 affordable houses in coming days. These houses will be available to the poor and needy persons at cheaper rates.

The Union Minister also appreciated ruling party leader at NMC Sandip Joshi and his team for undertaking desilting work of Sonegaon Lake. So far 2,200 truck silt has been removed from the dry lake and another 2,000 truck silt will be removed in next few days. Legislators Sudhakar Deshmukh, Anil Sole, Girish Vyas, and Mallikarjun Reddy were present during discussion.