The Union Cabinet on Thursday approved a Rs.7,277-crore Drought Mitigation Special Package for the integrated development of the drought-hit Bundelkhand region in Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh from 2009 to 2010.

The package covers seven districts of Uttar Pradesh (Banda, Chitrakoot, Hamirpur, Jalaun, Jhansi, Lalipur and Mahoba) and six districts of Madhya Pradesh (Chhatarpur, Damoh, Datia, Panna, Sagar and Tikamgarh).

Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi has been pressing for such a dispensation for the region.

Under the package, the main strategy will be optimisation of water resources through rainwater harvesting and proper utilisation of the river systems. Intensive and diversified agriculture will be promoted for gain in productivity of crops, besides higher sown area in the kharif season.

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