The government plans to spend Rs 50,000 crore over the next five years under the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY) to improve farm productivity.
"It has been decided that in 5 years, Rs 50,000 crore from the central Budget would be utilised for the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana. States' share will be over and above this," Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said while communicating the Cabinet decision.
He further said: "This can also be utilised to help the material component in MNREGA (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act)."
The decision was taken at the meeting of Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday.
For the current fiscal, he said the allocation is Rs 5,300 crore.
The spending this year is expected to bring an additional 6 lakh hectares under irrigation while 5 lakh hectares will benefit from drip irrigation. That apart, 1,300 watershed projects have been marked for completion.
Currently, 142 million hectares are used for cultivation, of which only 45% farm land is under irrigation.
"The major objective of the PMKSY is to achieve convergence of investments in irrigation at the field level, expand cultivable area under assured irrigation (har khet ko pani), improve on-farm water use efficiency to reduce wastage of water, enhance adoption of precision-irrigation and other water-saving technologies (more crop per drop)," he said.