Water

Close to 90% projects under PM's flagship irrigation scheme remain incomplete

These 8,214 projects, launched between 2009-10 and 2014-15, should have been completed in 4-7 years

By Kiran Pandey, Rajit Sengupta
Last Updated: Wednesday 25 July 2018
These irrigation project cover 39.07 million hectares in 28 states. Credit: Agnimirh Basu
These irrigation project cover 39.07 million hectares in 28 states. Credit: Agnimirh Basu These irrigation project cover 39.07 million hectares in 28 states. Credit: Agnimirh Basu

Just 849 of the 8,214 projects under the Watershed Development Component of the flagship Prime Minister Krishi Sinchayee Yojana have seen “official closure” till date. The projects which, the recently released 39th Standing Committee on Rural Development says, “are absolutely essential for the development of rainfed agricultural areas”, were rolled out between 2009-10 and 2014-15 and should have been completed within four to seven years. They cover 39.07 million hectares in 28 states.

The committee says the important flagship programme remained a “Non-Starter” due to the dearth of administrative acumen, effective willpower and lack of visionary approach at the level of implementing agencies. It adds that WDC is an important “Cog in the wheels” of PMKSY and for a noble scheme such as PMKSY to run smoothly, all its components need to be performing well.

Credit: 39th Standing Committee Report on Rural Development (Department of Land Resources)

In July 2015, the government had committed to complete—5,750—close to 70 per cent of the approved watershed projects by 2020. But in three years, just 849 projects have been completed. Will the government be able to complete more than 85 per cent of the backlog in another two years? 

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