Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani today began payment of Rs.2,285.59-crore input assistance for loss of crops to 23.25-lakh farmers in 96 drought-hit talukas in the state. He disbursed Rs.31.93-lakh assistance to
Speaking at a farmers rally at Rajkot to celebrate his one year in office and late former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s birthday as Good Governance Day, he said the state government changed the drought manual this time for extending the relief to farmers in talukas receiving even up to 14 inches of rainfall, instead of normal criterion of 4 (four) inches. It was because certain areas were lashed with too heavy rains in a short spell followed by no rain for long period, both enough to damage crops.
Mr. Rupani said the farmers of Saurashtra region are too strong to withstand drought. About 2.40-lakh farmers of eight talukas of Rajkot will be paid Rs.191.19-crore as input assistance to compensate the crop loss. He said the Narmada Canal-based SAUNI scheme will be completed by December 2019 to fill up 115 dams in the Saurashtra region – and farmers could take three crops a year. The state government is setting up desalination plants of 100-crore MLD capacity at Jodiya, Porbandar, Bhavnagar, Veraval, Dwaraka at a cost of Rs.100-crore each.
He said the first thing Prime Minister Narendra Modi was to approve completion of the Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP) on the Narmada River. He said the farmers of the state had suffered drought in the past, getting erratic and inadequate supply of electricity and water, but no more. The state’s farmers are capable of satiate the hunger of the world if they get enough water and electricity.
Mr. Rupani listed Jyoti Gram Yojna, solar plants, supplying adequate quantity of quality seeds as well as urea, now coated with neem to check siphoning of the fertilizer in open market, increasing the incentive for precision farming from 70% to 85%, bringing 17-lakh hectares under drip irrigation benefitting 10-lakh farmers, buying 14.98 lakh tonnes of the produce worth Rs.6,840.22-crore at minimum support price, groundnut worth Rs65-crore from 17,000 farmers in Rajkot district, and fencing agriculture fields to ward off wild pigs and blue bulls.
Agriculture Minister R.C. Faldu said that farmers are being paid Rs.13,000 per two hectares as assistance for fodder and water in 51 drought-hit talukas.
Mr. Rupani accompanied by other dignitaries at the rally disbursed farm input assistance to 12, wire mesh to 4, drip irrigation to 5 and tractor to 5 beneficiaries, worth totaling Rs.31.93-lakh as a token.
The second session was devoted to rabi crops, dry and scientific farming by Dr. Hirpara of Targadia-based Kheti Sanshodhan Kendra.
Those present at the rally included Food & Civil Supplies Minister Jayesh Radadiya, Water Supply and Animal Husbandry Minister Kunwarji Bavaliya, MP Mohanbhai Kundaria, MLAs Govindbhai Patel and Arvindbhai Raiyyani, Municipal Finance Board Chairman Dhansukhbhai Bhanderi, Mayor Binaben Acharya, Nitin Bharadwaj, Kamlesh Mirani, Bharat Bodhra, D.K. Sakhiya, Jentibhai Dhol, Bhanubhai Meta, Vallabhbhai Kathiria, Bhanuben Babaria, Gujarat Government’s Principal Secretary Sanjay Prasad, Collector Rahul Gupta, Municipal Commissioner Banchhanidhi Pani, Police Commissioner Manoj Agrawal, DDO Anil Ranavasia and Director of Agriculture B.M. Modi.
Source: Information Department, Gujarat