Rs 508.98 cr allocated for drinking water scheme

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Tiruchirapalli, Apr 23: Tamil Nadu has been allocated the maximum amount of Rs 508.98 crore to implement the centrally-funded 'Artificial recharge of ground water through dug wells in hard rock areas,' scheme for augmenting ground water resources, according to official sources.

Apart from Tamil Nadu, the scheme was being implemented in Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Karnataka at a total cost of Rs 1,798 crore. It would be implemented for a period of three years upto 2009-10 in blocks identified as over-exploited, semi-critical and critical, where the ground water level had sharply declined over the years, sources added.

The primary objective of the scheme, include intensifying artificial recharge, increasing the sustainability of wells, drinking water availability and improving the overall irrigated agricultural productivity. A sum of Rs 4,000 each would be given as subsidy to eligible small and marginal farmers having irrigation open wells to establish the recharge structures close to their wells, while 50 per cent subsidy would be given to other farmers under the scheme.

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) would receive the funds from the Central Government and disburse them to the participating banks to grant subsidy to the eligible farmers, the sources added.

The scheme would be implemented in Thuraiyur, Thathaiengarpet, Uppiliapuram, Musiri and Manapparai blocks in Tiruchirapalli district to augment the declining water resources in these areas, District Collector T Soundiah said.

UNI

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