NABARD to give subsidies between 75 and 100 per cent to 365 small, marginal and large farmers

National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) will be helping 365 small, marginal and large farmers in Dindigul district to implement drip irrigation.

The farmers would be provided subsidy from 75 to 100 per cent of the project cost under the NABARD Watershed Programme.

S. Natarajan, Deputy General Manager, NABARD Watersheds Unit in Madurai which covers eight southern districts, told The Hindu here on Thursday that this was part of a development plan prepared by the Village Watershed Committees with the guidance of CIRHEP (a watershed development specialist NGO based at Nilakottai), GIZ, a German Federal body and NABARD.

“With drip irrigation and by switching over to alternate crops, farmers could see sizeable increase in their income and could even face a drought year without sizeable reduction in their farm incomes. The beneficiaries would be drawn from two watershed projects in Dindigul – Poosaripatti and Appiyampatti,” he said.

Drip irrigation system could also help increase the cultivation area and cropping intensity. The automated drip irrigation system given at the root zone of crops would result in savings such as reduced labour for irrigation and weeding.

The project would be implemented in six villages covered by two watershed projects of NABARD in Dindigul district, he said.

Utilising its Watershed Development Fund, NABARD in partnership with the State Government, had executed 160 micro watersheds for holistic development in Tamil Nadu.

The impact studies carried out by independent agencies have revealed that these projects had contributed significantly in enhancing productivity and increased agricultural production.

They have also brought comprehensive and holistic development besides making the villages become resilient to some extent from the effects of climate change, added Mr. Natarajan. A meeting was held on Wednesday at Appiyampatti, one of the villages in the two watersheds in Dindigul district, to explain about drip irrigation system and the procedures for obtaining loans and subsidies.

About 150 farmers who intend to install drip irrigation units in their farms attended the meeting.

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