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GTA to get R 25 crore for Accelerated Development of Minor Irrigation (ADMI) project

Accelerated Development of Minor Irrigation (ADMI) project
In a bid to help small and marginal farmers and enhance agricultural production in the three hill sub-divisions of Darjeeling, the state government today said the state and central governments will allot Rs 25 crore to the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) under the ‘Accelerated Development of Minor Irrigation’ (ADMI) project.
The department of the water resources investigation and development (WRID) that is heading the project has asked the GTA to prepare a project under it, on how the produce of the small and marginal farmers can be boosted.
State minister of the WRID, Soumen Mahapatra, today arrived in Darjeeling and held a meeting with GTA officials and MLAs of Darjeeling and Kurseong to discuss the project.
It is learnt that of the total funds, the state government will be sanctioning Rs 15 crore, while the remaining Rs 10 crore will be given by the central government.
The minister today handed over Rs 2 crore to the GTA to initiate the project.
"This project is designed to extend support to the marginalized farmers of the hills who grow cardamom, ginger, paddy and many more other crops," minister Mahapatra said.
Kurseong MLA Rohit Sharma said it is likely to take at least six months for the GTA to come up with a plan under the project.
"We will soon hold a meeting with stakeholders and members of the GTA to chalk out strategies for the project," the MLA said.
"Under this project, we want to improve availability of water for agriculture and fisheries and boost production by developing new minor surface and ground water irrigation schemes," GTA member Arun Sinji said.
According to the website of the West Bengal Accelerated Development of Minor Irrigation Project, the project is an external-aided one with funding assistance from the International Development Association (World Bank).
"Over the years, we had been pursuing the matter with the World Bank as the district had not got any funds to enhance the produce of small and marginal farmers," Mr Sinji said.
“We had pursued this matter with the World Bank, which is ready to sanction the funds, but for that the GTA needs to send the plan first. There are many schemes under the funding project of the World Bank and they will sanction funds if the projects meet their pre-requisites," Mr Mahapatra said.

Statesman news service 

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