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New Delhi:

The Central government has allocated Rs 4,000 crore as annual allotment to states for the current financial year under ‘Per Drop More Crop’ component of Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY-PDMC).

The state governments have identified the beneficiaries to be covered under the programme, said an Agriculture Ministry statement, adding that the process to release funds to some of the states is already under way for the year 2020-21.

The Department of Agriculture Cooperation and Farmers’ Welfare is implementing the ‘Per Drop More Crop’ component of PMKSY-PDMC, which focuses on enhancing water efficiency at farm level through micro irrigation technologies such as ‘drip and sprinkler’ irrigation.

The drip micro irrigation technique not only helps in saving water but also reduces fertilizer usage, labour expenses and other input costs. The statement said Micro Irrigation Fund corpus of Rs 5,000 crore has been created with National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), an apex development financial institution in India.

The objective of the fund is to facilitate the states in mobilizing the resources for expanding coverage of micro irrigation by taking up special and innovative projects and also for incentivising micro irrigation beyond the provisions available under PMKSY-PDMC to encourage farmers to install micro irrigation systems, it said.

So far, micro irrigation funds have been released to Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu for Rs 616.14 crore and for Rs 478.79 crore, respectively, through NABARD.

The area covered under these projects is 1.021 lakh hectare in Andhra Pradesh and 1.76 lakh hectare in Tamil Nadu.

During the last five years (2015-16 to 2019-20), an area of 46.96 lakh hectare has been covered under micro irrigation through PMKSY-PDMC.

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