**Bhubaneswar: ** Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today refuted Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s comments on irrigation facility during his Khurda rally political speech on December 24 last year.
Dashing a letter to PM Modi and wishing him a very Happy New Year, Naveen Patnaik has mentioned, “I am grateful for your kind visit to Odisha on 24th December 2018 and laying foundation stone and inaugurating various developmental projects. My Government will render all the necessary support for speedy completion of these projects.”
Citing media reports of PM Modi’s comments that Odisha has created only 22000 hectares of irrigation out of the 10 lakh hectares promised in 2014, the Chief Minister has argued, “Irrigation is the pivotal infrastructure that supports Agriculture. We had promised in 2014 to create an ambitious target of ten lakh hectares irrigation potential. I am happy to share that since 2014, Odisha has created an additional irrigation potential of 7.8 lakh hectares and we are on course to surpass the 10 lakh hectares target that my Government has set for itself.”
He has further argued, “From 2014, an amount of Rs 26,889 crores has been spent in the irrigation and water sector with a contribution of Rs 1211 crores (i.e.) 4.5% from the Government of India contribution through PMKGY (AIBP). In fact, in the current year a record amount of Rs 10,196 crores has been provided by the State.”
He has also mentioned, “You will be happy to know that with our own programme, 46 Mega Lift Irrigation Projects with Ayacut 54,472 Ha, 53576 Deep Bore Wells with Ayacut 2,67,880 Ha, 5837 Community Lift Points with Ayacut 1,29,764 Ha, 8135 Check Dams with Ayacut 97,694 Ha have been created and farmers are physically getting water from these projects.”
The Odisha CM has also stated, “The detailed information on creation of irrigation potential from April 2014 to November 2018 is also available in our website http://odisha.gov.in”.
“Odisha is amongst the top States in the country in investment on irrigation as well as creation of irrigation potential,” Naveen avers.
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