Balasore(Orissa), May 30 : 'Water Councils' in villages of Orissa's Balasore district have been set to provide relief to farmers with sparsely irrigated lands to help them meet their water requirements.
The water councils set up by the Orissa Government, are playing a significant role in fulfilling irrigation needs of farmers through the lift Irrigation scheme.
The scheme has helped about 366 farmers in seven villages in irrigating around 400 acres land.
"It has been two years since water council started functioning here. Seven villages have benefited, 366 farmers have also gained from the councils. Grain is being produced on more than 400 acres of land," said Diatary Majhi, the Water Council secretary.
"Earlier, in the absence of water councils, farmers used to suffer due to water scarcity. During dry spells, people were to travel distant places like Allahabad, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat and other States for livelihood," informed Majhi while adding, "but now that is history. With timely irrigation, crop yields have increased augmenting the incomes of the farmers."
"Grain production has improved. Earlier, due to drought, our yield used to suffer. But with this project, even in days of shortage, we are able to feed ourselves," said Ganesh Chandra Mohapatra, the farmer.
For irrigation, three motor pumps with 30 horse power have been installed.
"With the provision of extra 250 KW of transformer and 600 meter of pipe line, the land under irrigation would be increased to another 300 acres and about 200 families would benefit," said Majhi.
Balasore is one of the drought-hit regions of Orissa's 30 districts but the Water Councils have came up as a relief for villagers.