Odisha Governor Raghubar Das, who has been visiting districts for the last several weeks, pointed out ‘loopholes’ as far as the irrigation systems established by the Odisha government are concerned.
Addressing the Krushi Odisha Samilani here on Sunday, the Governor observed, “Irrigation facility in the state has not progressed as it should have been. As 70 per cent of people live in villages and solely depend on agriculture, smaller irrigation facilities will come in handy for them rather than bigger ones. According to the rural population, adequate irrigation facilities should be provided. But we have lagged behind on this front.”
Terming farmers as the greatest scientists in the world, the Governor said that smaller projects like check dams and dykes in hilly areas will be beneficial for farmers in villages.
He said that the agriculture department working at the block and panchayat levels should draw up plans for smaller irrigation projects so that small farmers can grow more crops.
Stating that the Prime Minister has made provision of Rs 2,000 as assistance in installments to each farmer in the country, he lamented that scores of farmers in Odisha are still deprived of the financial assistance as provisioned under PM Kisan Samman Nidhi. Eligible farmers should be identified.
The eligible farmers can get assistance of Rs 6000 per year in 3 installments with Rs 2000 on every installment under the scheme.
He also alleged that even though many eligible farmers have been covered under the PM Fasal Bima Yojana while many farmers have not been provided soil health cards. There is a need for soil tests of farmlands.
“I draw the attention of the state government towards these small things,” he said.
Agriculture Minister Ranedra Pratap Swain said that the suggestions of the Governor and the women farmers will be placed in the next Agriculture budget.