UP badly needs aid for farm sector, infrastructure, Maya tells C

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New Delhi, Dec 19 (UNI) Underlining that it has targeted a growth rate of 10 per cent for itself during the 11th Five-Year plan, Uttar Pradesh today asked for generous help from the Centre for its farming sector, development of infrastructure and establishing IITs, IIMs and enhancing health facilities.

The state also urged the Centre to give immediate in principle sanction for setting up a greenfield airport at Jewar to provide international air link to the city of Taj Mahal.

In an address read on her behalf at the National Development Council (NDC) meeting here, state Chief Minister Mayawati said increasing irrigation faciltiies was crucial for the agriculture of the state as 90 per cent of farmers had only small and marginal holdings, so they were badly in need of reducing the cost of cultivation and boosting the yield.

The Chief Minister complained of inadequate supply of fertiliser and wanted the existing policy of DAP fertiliser to be simplified.

She demanded that the closed fertiliser plants at Gorakhpur and Kanpur be revived.

Ms Mayawati also urged the Centre to include all the 70 districts of the state in the National Horticulture Mission.

She underscored the need of increasing assistance under the Accelerated Irrigation Benefit Programme (AIBP) to 90 per cent from the existing 25 per cent. She said the state was getting only 25 per cent grant even for those irrigation project which benefit flood or drought affected areas.

Ms Mayawai also demanded substantial hike in the funds for constructing link roads under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna and release of funds under the Rajiv Gandhi Rural Electrification Scheme.

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