‘No drought in Maharashtra for next 4 years if monsoon is proper’

  • PTI , Panaji
  • Updated: Jun 02, 2016 22:10 IST
A shepard drinks water on the dry bed of Manjara Dam, which supplies water to Latur and nearby villages in Marathwada region in Maharashtra. Failed monsoons play havoc with millions of farmers in central India, leading to crippling poverty and soaring suicides. (AP)

Maharashtra will not witness drought for next four years if there is “proper” monsoon this year, minister of state for finance, Deepak Kesarkar said on Thursday.

“If there is proper monsoons this time, for next four years there won’t be drought. That much storage is created by the state government for farmers,” Kesarkar said.

He said the BJP-led NDA government has earmarked half of its annual budget for the agriculture sector this fiscal.

“For agriculture this year, we have not only given compensation to farmers but the insurance claims have also gone up. In addition, we have given them (farmers) a facility to reschedule loans which will give them a lot of relief,” he said.

Read: It’s raining good news: Normal to excess rainfall this monsoon says IMD

He said the results of state government’s efforts will be seen “once we have good monsoon”.

“We are taking utmost care to see that water is conserved is future. After proper monsoon there will be recharging of wells and borewells,” Kesarkar added.

The minister said his government is also paying attention to the crop pattern.

Read: Drought will cost India $100 bn. Here’s how industry can weather the storm

“We are giving drip (irrigation) to sugarcane which need more water,” he said, adding that some areas like Marathwada are always drought-prone due to scanty rainfall.

“This time, for four years, there were no rains (in Marathwada). This year, the forecast says there will be good rains in Marathwada,” the minister added.

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