Minister for Medium and Major Irrigation M.B. Patil has said that the government has decided to get the Upper Bhadra Project the status of “national project” which will ensure financial assistance from the Union government.

Addressing presspersons during inspection of work on irrigation projects under Upper Krishna Project (UKP) at Baluti village of Basavanabagewadi taluk on Sunday, he said that his Ministry was revising the entire project to obtain “national project” recognition for Upper Bhadra Project.

Mr. Patil said that any irrigation project that proposes to irrigate at least two lakh hectares of land would become eligible to get “national project” recognition under which a substantial share of funds will come from the Union government.

On acquiring land for irrigation projects under UKP Stage III, the Minister said that a high-level committee was being set up for acquiring 1.2 lakh hectares of land for nine projects under Stage III.

“The process of acquiring land would start within a month. The government has drawn up estimates worth Rs. 30,000 crore for land acquisition,” he said. He said that as per a socio-economic survey, 22,000 families in 22 villages will be affected and they will be relocated under Relief and Rehabilitation policy.

About the Mulawad lift irrigation project, he said that as the head work has started, 25,000 hectares of land will get irrigation facility by March 2015.

“This is going to be a major milestone in the efforts to help farmers in this drought-prone district get irrigation facility,” the Minister said.

He said that all primary process had been completed to convert the Ramathal irrigation project of Bagalkot district into one of the biggest micro irrigation projects in the world.

He said that 26,000 hectares of land will have micro irrigation facility at a cost of Rs. 760 crore.

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