DELHI, July 16:- Minister for Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution and Legal Metrology, Ch. Zulfkar Ali called on Union Minister for Water Resources, Uma Bharti at New Delhi and discussed issues related to water problems in J&K and shortage of funds under PHE and Irrigation sectors in the state.
Ch Zulfkar Ali submitted a memorandum to union Minister demanding adequate funds for drinking water and irrigation projects of Jammu and Kashmir.
Taking up the matter of Ans Irrigation Canal Budhal, the Minister demanded additional funds so that the work is initiated in full swing on the ambitious project. Minister apprised Uma Bharti that Ans Irrigation Project was sanctioned under AIBP in 2010-11 at a cost of Rs. 53.99 crore to provide irrigation facility for 5000 hectares area of district Rajouri. He said that the project which included a tunnel of 1.5 km having capacity of 50 cusec water is an important project for the economic development of the district as well as boosting agriculture production. He said that agriculture production in the district is drastically declining for last many years due to dependency of irrigation facility on rain water only.
“There is a dire need to improve irrigation facilities in the district for better agriculture production” he said adding that the project also has potential for power generation.
The Minister brought into the notice of Uma Bharti that the Ans irrigation project was sanctioned in a bunch of scheme M-158 in 2010 but the work was not allowed during the period till 2015 as the contract committee could not finalize the suitable contractor /bidder for allotment of work. He said that in these 5 years the cost of the project has escalated to Rs 95 crore. He said that it was former chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed led PDP-BJP coalition government which took decision in cabinet and allotted the work.
The Minister said that the state was assured sufficient funding however it is getting very meager amount for execution of all these 158 schemes making the completion of the significant project impossible. The Minister urged the Union Government to approve the revised DPR of Ans Irrigation Project under Pradhan Mantri Sanchai Yojna (PMSY).
The Minister also urged centre for liberal funding for all the ongoing schemes under Hydraulic sector in the state and particularly District Rajouri where people are facing acute water crises. Minister further apprised Union Minister that in the era of 21st century female folk in rural areas has to carry water miles away for use in their houses and centre must concentrate on mitigating the problems of water in rural areas on priority.\
The Minister also brought into the notice of Union Minister that the topography of J&K is a different from rest of the country, so the policies formulated for other states may not be feasible and practically implemented in J&K State.
Union Minister appreciated the steps taken by J&K Government headed by Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on all fronts particularly in the governance. She assured that the demands projected by Minister will be properly examined and redressed and all possible help under all the sectors shall be given to the state.