Orissa announces 200 days work, free rice in drought-hit areas

Last Updated: Thursday, September 30, 2010 - 21:13

Bhubaneswar: The Orissa government on Thursday
announced 200 days labour intensive work in drought-hit areas
besides financial assistance for farmers who sustained 50 per
cent or more crop loss, official sources said.

The state government announced the package after Chief
Minister Naveen Patnaik reviewed the drought situation.

Of the state`s 314 blocks, 106 had reported drought of
which 26 blocks were identified as severely hit.
The package included exemption of tuition and examination
fees for high schools students and free rice for the old and
poor in drought-hit areas.

"The district administrations were told to identify
beneficiaries of the free rice under the food security
programme for drought hit areas," said a senior official.

An adult would be provided one kg rice every day and a
child 500 gram.

The amount of compensation per hectare of irrigated land
was set at Rs 4,000 and Rs 2,000 for non-irrigated land.

Subsidised groundnut, mung, biri, mustard, sunflower and
other seeds would be provided at a subsidised rate to farmers
while the tenure of loan repayment incurred during the kharif
season would be increased.
The farmers could avail loan for rabi crop at the rate of
three per cent interest.

The state government also decided to exempt 50 per
cent of water cess for farmers who sustained crop loss due to
drought. "The remaining 50 per cent of water cess will be
recovered from them next year," it said.

The farmers would get 50 per cent rebate on purchase
of 7.5 horse power pumpsets for irrigation and 75 per cent
rebate on procuring pedal irrigation machines.

Lift irrrigation points would be provided electricity
by payment of 50 per cent of the arrear amount.

The government also announced rennovation of all
medium irrigation projects besides construction of about 2000
check dams by June 2011.

The farmers who wanted to use plastic pipes to
irrigate land could also get 50 per cent rebate over their
purchase. "The ceiling of rebate is Rs 15,000 per farmer," it
said.

As many as 50,000 private lift irrigation points would
be installed under Jalnidhi scheme by June 2011, it said.

The chief minister also directed collectors to submit
a list of places where crop loss was 50 per cent or more.

The state was planning to submit a report with the
Centre on the drought situation by first week of October,
Patnaik said.

PTI



First Published: Thursday, September 30, 2010 - 21:13

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