Stakeholders promise to contribute Rs. 7.8 cr. to partially meet project cost

Stakeholders from Mysore and Chamarajanagar districts have urged Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to make budgetary allocation for the Kabini Second Stage Irrigation Project.

They have also promised to contribute Rs. 500 an acre, amounting to Rs. 7.8 crore, to partially meet the project cost.

This comes a day after the Chief Minister announced in Mysore to allocate Rs. 50,000 crore for irrigation projects in the State. This would be apportioned equally over the next five years as part of its commitment to implement the promise made in the election manifesto and give a boost to agriculture, according to the Chief Minister.

Responding to Mr. Siddaramaiah’s announcement, members of the Kabini Second Stage Beneficiaries Action Committee told The Hindu that the project should be accorded priority as successive governments had failed to implement works.

H.V.S. Murthy, president of the committee, said barring Kollegal taluk, there was no irrigation in Chamarajanagar district where agriculture was entirely under rain-fed conditions.

Most of the regions coming under the two districts including Gundlupet, Begur, Kavalande and other places were drought-prone and suffered from acute water stress throughout the year.

In the absence of irrigation, agriculture had remained underdeveloped and hence it was necessary to take up this project, said Mr. Murthy. This would benefit nearly 5 lakh people spread over 180 villages and trigger the economic growth of Chamarajanagar district, he said.

Even though the project had secured administrative sanction and the groundbreaking ceremony was performed in 1986, the project never took off. The project entails laying a canal system of 120 km to irrigate nearly 1.56 lakh acres of land.

The project would help augment the State exchequer through additional revenue generation and tax consequent to improvement in the agricultural output, Mr. Murthy said.

The committee members submitted a memorandum to the Chief Minister during his stay in the city on Saturday.

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