Farmers in Koraput yet to reap benefit from Deep Borewell Irrigation scheme

Jeypore: Hopes of Padlam Gadaba, a farmer from Mahadeiput panchayat in Koraput district, to get a borewell has washed away. Though Padlam deposited Rs 10,000 at Union Bank of India, Koraput branch, for a borewell under the Deep Borewell Irrigation Scheme of the Biju Krushak Vikash Yojana, he has been left in despair as no work has been done by the administration for past one and a half years.

In Mahadeiput panchayat, Padlam is not the only one who is in limbo as there are many such farmers facing similar issues. As per reports, a total of 2,600 farmers had registered online and paid money for borewell under the government’s scheme but they are left in lurch as work is yet to begin.

“I had paid money for a borewell as I expected this would sort out my irrigation issues and help meet the daily water requirement. But it has been one and half years, and I have got nothing apart from assurances from the administration,” said Padlam.

“They (administration) have assured us that borewells will be dug in March. After taking loans, we deposited the required money with the bank but hardly any work has been carried out for borewell. Except for rainy season, it is impossible to cultivate anything during other time of the year,” another farmer Balanath Gadaba, said,

Meanwhile, officials of the Agriculture department and the Lift Irrigation department are blaming each other for the delay in digging of the borewell.

“There is a provision for tribal farmers with land to pay Rs 10,000 while others have to pay Rs 20,000 to get a borewell under the scheme. Accordingly farmers of the area had deposited money with the bank. Thereafter, it is the responsibility of the Lift Irrigation department to resolve the matter,” said S. Keshab Rao, Agriculture officer, Mahadeiput.

Kailash Bhatra, junior engineer of the Lift Irrigation Department in Koraput, said when the tender was rolled out no contractor participated in the bidding process. Therefore fresh tender will be invited soon for digging of borewell, he added.