New Delhi: In a bid to insulate farmers from the vagaries of monsoon, the government on Thursday announced a new national irrigation scheme with an outlay of Rs.50,000 crore that will not only ensure supply of water to the agricultural sector, but also promote its efficient use and prevent wastage.
The government also allocated Rs.200 crore for three years to set up an online national agriculture market by integrating 585 wholesale markets across India.
The irrigation scheme will have an outlay of Rs.50,000 crore over a period of five years beginning the current fiscal, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley told a press conference here. The allocation for the current financial year is Rs.5,300 crore.
The approval to the "Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana" (PMKSY) was given by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) at a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Jaitley said the scheme aims to expand cultivable area under assured irrigation, improve on-farm water use efficiency to reduce wastage of water and enhance the adoption of precision-irrigation and other water saving technologies.
He said the programme aims at a decentralized state-level planning and execution structure, in order to allow states to draw up a District Irrigation Plan (DIP) and a State Irrigation Plan (SIP).
The programme will be supervised and monitored at the national level by an Inter-Ministerial National Steering Committee (NSC) under the chairmanship of the prime minister.
The CCEA also gave its approval to a central scheme for promotion of National Agricultural Market through Agri-Tech Infrastructure Fund (ATIF).
An amount of Rs.200 crore has been earmarked for the scheme from 2015-16 to 2017-18.
The target is to integrate 585 selected regulated markets across the country.
The department of agriculture and cooperation will set it up through the small farmers agribusiness consortium (SFAC) by creation of a common electronic platform deployable in selected regulated markets across the country, an official release said here.